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Joyce’s Drinking

From: James Joyce Quarterly
Volume 48, Number 4, Summer 2011
pp. 637-666 | 10.1353/jjq.2011.0096



This essay seeks to establish that, far more than has generally been recognized, Joyce drank heavily and habitually from his early twenties to his death. In addition, it speculates on the possible effect of the drinking on Joyce’s children; what part alcohol may have played in his difficulties with many of his friends; and whether it may explain at least in part his notorious extravagance with money as well as problems with insomnia, depression, hypochondria, and, perhaps, the sexual difficulties that have been suspected.