What is is ……………………….
Bloomsday is a commemoration and celebration of the life of Irish writer James Joyce during which the events of his novel Ulysses (which is set on 16 June 1904) are relived. It is observed annually on 16 June in Dublin and elsewhere. Joyce chose the date as it was the date of his first outing with his wife-to-be, Nora Barnacle; they walked to the Dublin suburb of Ringsend. The name derives from Leopold Bloom, the protagonist of Ulysses.
if like me, you’re a bit scared of actually reading Ulysses, which has a fearsome reputation, Radio 4 iu running lots of special programmes today, check out Radio 4 listen again if you’ve missed any.
for a gentle introduction to James Joyce, start with
Portrait of the artist as a young man and to give you no esxcuse not to give it a go, here’s a free PDF file of the whole book
and even more accesible, the short story collection
and here’s a link to an e-book version
if nothing else – read” the dead” – the most haunting, sublime writing you will ever come across.