Thursday, February 09, 2012

James Joyce Children’s Story Gets First Publication

A children’s story sent in letter form by James Joyce (Dubliners, Finnegans Wake) to his grandson, Stephen James Joyce, in 1936 has been published for the first time by a small press in Ireland. From the Guardian:
Joyce's The Cats of Copenhagen is a "younger twin sister" to his published children's story The Cat and the Devil, which told of how the devil built a bridge over a French river in one night, said publisher Ithys Press.

"Nearly lost and forgotten, it is a joy to see this delightful story in print at last," added the publisher.

Like its predecessor, The Cats of Copenhagen was written in a letter to Joyce's grandson, Stephen James Joyce, while the author was in Denmark and the four-year-old Stephen was in France. The new tale is "exquisite, surprising, and with a keen, almost anarchic subtext", said Ithys, which has printed a limited run of 200 illustrated copies, ranging in price from €300 to €1,200.
All is, however, not entirely well in the world of the influential Irish novelist and poet who died January 13, 1941. Though his work came into the public domain last month, there is some disagreement about whether The Cats of Copenhagen, never before published, should be included with the balance of Joyce’s work. You can read more about that here.


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