Days of Our Lives

Robert Weninger

in Bloomsday 100

Published by University Press of Florida

Published in print October 2009 | ISBN: 9780813034027
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780813038162 | DOI:
Days of Our Lives

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James Joyce reduced the narrative time span of his novel, Ulysses, to just one day and thus achieved something that had never been attempted in this way before in the epical genre. In other words, Joyce was no less innovative in this regard than he was in deploying myth and interior monologue. But where did the idea originally stem from? What inspired Joyce to write a 700-page novel that spanned only one day in the lives of its protagonists? This chapterand explores the one-day novel directs attention to another aspect of Joycean intertextuality: his influence on subsequent authors. It argues that Ulysses has become, in Michel Foucault's term, a foundational literary text of the twentieth century. However, authors who imitated some of the crucial innovations of Ulysses, such as Virginia Woolf in Mrs. Dalloway and Between the Acts, Graham Swift in The Sweet-Shop Owner, Don DeLillo in Cosmopolis, and Arno Schmidt in Zettels Traum, felt compelled also to fight against his legacy or to deny and suppress its effects.

Keywords: James Joyce; Ulysses; intertextuality; authors; Virginia Woolf; Graham Swift; Don DeLillo; Arno Schmidt; one-day novel

Chapter.  9451 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (20th Century onwards)

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