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My Brother's Keeper: James Joyce's Early Years
Stanislaus Joyce was more than his brother's keeper: he was at various times his brother's co-dependent, touchstone, conscience, and biggest fan. The two shared the same genius, the same childhood influences, and had the same literary instinct, but in Stanislaus it was channeled into sober academic pursuit, while in James it evolved into gaiety, wild whimsy, and at times s ...more
Paperback, 292 pages
Published May 15th 2003 by Da Capo Press
(first published 1957)
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Third or fourth time picked up over the years - Joyce's younger brother chronicles the first two decades and change of life w/ James in this incomplete text. For those with even the most basic education in Joycean studies, there is not much new here. This text will work well for readers turned off from most Joyce texts, but recall enjoying Arab in high school. It is fitting, in that Stanislaus, whom died on Bloomsday, did not care for Joyce's masterpieces, but insisted throughout his life he go ...more
Stanislaus' style has "the touch of the artist" in it as his brother might well say, but at times it hits kinks,very convoluted phrases that need hard ironing. Overall, the book unfolds the two brother's early life and reveals more nitches of his brother's character, areas of his personality I have not read about before. For example, joyce, even for all his hatred of the Roman Catholic Church, was not expressly athiestic rather he was deeply moved and inspired by the artistic idea of spiritualit ...more
A revelatory account of the lived values of James Joyce, as experienced and witnessed by his bother Stanislaus. Other than Ellmann's works, and differently, this is the single most powerful and eloquent account of the "man behind the screen." A brief, incisive, balanced vision.
Oh my - the high cost of finding oneself in the same nest as a genius. James made much of fleeing the nets, but poor Stan seemed forever caught up in the webbing, albeit happily. Amazing how often genius is supported by willing handmaidens.