“Daren’t joke about the dead”:
James Joyce’s Concerted Effort to Include Humor in the “Hades” Episode of Ulysses
In a diary entry from 1907, Stanislaus Joyce noted a conversation with his brother about the early conception of Ulysses:
Jim told me that he is going to expand his story “Ulysses” into a short book and make a Dublin “Peer Gynt” of it. I think that some suggestions of mine put him in the way of making it important. As it happens in one day, I suggested that he should make a comedy of it, but he won’t.
Well, he did. Whether it was his brother’s suggestion, the comic elements of Peer Gynt, or something else that inspired him is uncertain, but Joyce certainly proceeded to include humor in Ulysses. In his Paris Notebook he had argued as early as 1903 that comedy is superior to tragedy in that it imparts joy while tragedy imparts sorrow:
All art which excites in us the feeling of joy is so far comic […] and is to be judged more or less excellent: and even tragic art may be said to participate in the nature of comic art so far as […] it excites in us the feeling of joy. From this it may be seen that tragedy is the imperfect manner and comedy the perfect manner in art.
Even though Joyce’s novel deals with many tragic situations, like Stephen’s crushing guilt for refusing his mother’s final wish, Molly’s infidelity, and Bloom’s sadness at the loss of his father and son, Joyce went to great lengths to make it funny as well, to impart in us the feelings of joy that only comedy can bring. While the version of the “Hades” episode that readers encountered in The Little Review in September 1918 had contained some humor, the overall tone was somber, and the humor was largely buried in Bloom’s lack of understanding about the Catholic church, some puns about death, and in Simon Dedalus’ irreverent dialogue.
It is now widely accepted that during the revisions between The Little Review and the publication of Ulysses, Joyce went back over many episodes to strengthen the Homeric allusions. He added dozens of flower references to the “Lotus Eaters” episode, food references to “Lestrygonians,” and even more death and underworld allusions to “Hades.” At the same time, however, he was also doing much more than just multiplying the connections to Homer. In an earlier investigation into “Hades,” I found that Joyce had added over one hundred references to Dublin popular culture. These new allusions to popular songs, plays, jokes, books, local landmarks, and businesses have nothing to do with Homer, but Joyce collected pages of such allusions in his notebooks and, while revising the episode, he crammed in as many as he could fit. This clearly shows that, aside from adding allusions to Homer, he had other goals in mind and making this episode funnier was one of them.
After Joyce died in 1941, Ezra Pound wrote a short essay about him entitled, “James Joyce, to His Memory” in which he commented about Ulysses:
It was in its author's own mind a mine of rich COMEDY, not a crucifix set in a chapel or a bag of saint's bones to be worshipped […] it may as well go on record that in the storm of abuse in the 1920's Joyce emitted only one mild complaint, thus verbatim: If only someone had said among all those critics, that the book is really damn funny!
Pound also referred to this conversation a decade earlier in The New Review using a slightly different “verbatim” quotation: “Has not the author himself complained in my hearing that at least someone might have said they enjoyed the book and thought it ‘so goddam funny’?” Pound could have pointed out any number of conversations he had with Joyce about Ulysses, but in the twenty years since the book was first published, that is the conversation that stuck with him—so much so that he wrote about it twice. He recognized that Joyce had gone to great lengths to make Ulysses funny, something that very few people noticed at the time.
We have come a long way since the first critics struggled to make sense of what Joyce had done in Ulysses. Few people today would deny that Ulysses is funny and that it gets funnier with each reading. And with the wealth of manuscripts, typescripts, and proofs available to us, we can now see the efforts that Joyce put into making sure that his readers would experience the joy that he set among the sorrow.
1921 was a frantic year for Joyce. He had been struggling with the censorship of The Little Review that was printing episodes of Ulysses in America, and he was devastated when, in February of that year, a U.S. court shut him down completely. Margaret Anderson and Jane Heap were found guilty of publishing obscenity and were nearly thrown in jail. It seemed as if his project might have foundered. But then in April, (a very long two months later), Sylvia Beach came to his rescue. The small bookstore owner in Paris agreed to defy the censors and publish Ulysses herself. On April 1 Beach hinted at this new project in a letter to her mother: “soon you may hear of us as regular Publishers and of the most important book of the age . . . shhhhhh . . . it’s a secret, all to be revealed to you in my next letter and it’s going to make us famous rah rah!” After signing the contract for a limited edition of 1,000 copies, Joyce was elated and he spent the next couple of months revising the early episodes and preparing them for publication. Then tragedy struck again. Joyce suffered a severe iritis attack that for nearly five weeks forced him to stop writing. It is unclear exactly what happened during those weeks that Joyce later called, a “delightful vacation with my eyes,” but something during this time changed his approach to revising the early episodes and composing the later ones. Afterwards, he began writing feverishly and (against the advice of his doctor) working twelve to sixteen hours per day, sometimes until he could no longer see. The revision documents that we have available today at the National Library of Ireland and in other collections around the world, help us to see Joyce at work at this very time and to partially unravel what he was doing.
For the “Hades” episode we have several types of documents (see Fig. 1)—there are no early notes or original fair copy manuscripts, and the Rosenbach Manuscript and Little Review versions of the episode both represent textual dead-ends. But there are notebooks, typescripts, several sets of galley proofs (or placards), and several sets of page proofs. Each time Joyce received the corrections back from Maurice Darantiere, his printer in Dijon, he would make further additions by hand that Darantiere then had to incorporate into the text using tiny letters on individual blocks. In only six months (August 1921 through January 1922), Joyce took his pen to the various documents for the entire novel and sent them back more than four hundred times before Ulysses was ready to be printed; for the “Hades” episode alone and over the course of two months (August and September 1921), he sent sixteen documents back to the printers with revisions. In the process he expanded the episode by 31% compared to its original length in The Little Review.
In order to understand what Darantiere had to deal with during Joyce’s revisions, it is important to understand the difference between the placards and page proofs. The galley proofs, or placards (from the French épreuves en placard) each contain eight full-sized pages of text printed in sequential order on one side of a large sheet of paper. (See Fig. 2) The sheet was then cut into eight single-sided pages intended for authorial corrections and revisions.
Changes made at this stage were relatively easy to fix; words simply slide down and across the page in order; this is the appropriate time for an author to add text or make substantial changes. This is not the case with the page proofs. (See Fig 3)
Page proofs contain sixteen pages of text printed non-sequentially, on both sides of the large sheet of paper with half of the pages printed up-side-down. This was done so that when the pages were folded, they would create a 16-page section of the novel that was ready to be bound. The edges needed to be cut, but that was typically left to the first readers. Additions made at the page proof stage often caused a complicated domino effect that moved all of the text across the sheet and over leaves of pages for the remainder of the episode. Darantiere became regularly frustrated with Joyce’s constant revisions to the extent that “throwing up his hands in despair” became a characteristic gesture when facing yet another resetting of a placard or page proof, and for the early episodes, he reverted back to placards in order to accommodate Joyce’s revisions, rather than preparing further page proofs that were more complicated and expensive to produce.
Below is an example of what Darantiere had to deal with. This progression of revisions begins with a short paragraph as it appeared in The Little Review, and as Joyce added text (he only very rarely removed any material), the paragraph grew to the state readers are familiar with today. The insertions at each level of revision are indicated in bold type and contain Hans Walter Gabler’s insertion marks (explained in more detail below). In 1918 the paragraph initially read:
He looked down at the boots he had blacked and polished.
Nearly three years later, between early August and 2 September 1921, Joyce began to add phrases from his notebooks to this paragraph. On the first version of placard 11, he added one short phrase from a notebook:
He looked down at the boots he had blacked and polished.
She had outlived him. ┌1Lost her husband.1┐ One must outlive the other. She would marry another. Him? No. Yet who knows after. One must go first: alone, under the ground: and lie no more in her warm bed.
On the second setting of placard 11, he added fourteen more phrases and complete sentences, more than doubling the size of the paragraph:
He looked down at the boots he had blacked and polished.
She had outlived him. Lost her husband. ┌2More dead for her than for me.2┐ One must outlive the other. ┌2Wise men say. There are more women than men in the world. Condole with her. Your terrible loss. I hope you’ll soon follow him.2┐ She would marry another. Him? No. Yet who knows after. ┌2Widowhood not the thing since the old queen died. Victoria and Albert. Frogmore memorial mourning. But in the end she put a few violets in her bonnet. All for a shadow. Consort not even a king. Her son was the substance. Something new to hope for not like the past she wanted back, waiting. It never comes.2┐ One must go first: alone, under the ground: and lie no more in her warm bed.
On the third version of placard 11, Joyce decided one of his previous insertions needed a short, explanatory phrase:
He looked down at the boots he had blacked and polished.
She had outlived him. Lost her husband. More dead for her than for me. One must outlive the other. Wise men say. There are more women than men in the world. Condole with her. Your terrible loss. I hope you’ll soon follow him. ┌3<Only> For Hindu widows only.3┐ She would marry another. Him? No. Yet who knows after. Widowhood not the thing since the old queen died. Victoria and Albert. Frogmore memorial mourning. But in the end she put a few violets in her bonnet. All for a shadow. Consort not even a king. Her son was the substance. Something new to hope for not like the past she wanted back, waiting. It never comes. One must go first: alone, under the ground: and lie no more in her warm bed.
At this stage Darantiere must have presumed that the revisions were complete, and so he set this section of the episode on page proof 7. They sent the proof to Joyce in mid September for final approval for publication, but Joyce saw the opportunity to add another short phrase in the middle of the additions he had made to the second placards earlier in the month:
He looked down at the boots he had blacked and polished.
She had outlived him. Lost her husband. More dead for her than for me. One must outlive the other. Wise men say. There are more women than men in the world. Condole with her. Your terrible loss. I hope you’ll soon follow him. For Hindu widows only. She would marry another. Him? No. Yet who knows after. Widowhood not the thing since the old queen died. Victoria and Albert. Frogmore memorial mourning. But in the end she put a few violets in her bonnet. ┌4Vain in her heart of hearts.4┐ All for a shadow. Consort not even a king. Her son was the substance. Something new to hope for not like the past she wanted back, waiting. It never comes. One must go first: alone, under the ground: and lie no more in her warm bed.
The page proofs then had to be set a second time, and again Joyce added one more short phrase from one of his notebooks before he was finally finished with this paragraph:
He looked down at the boots he had blacked and polished.
She had outlived him. Lost her husband. More dead for her than for me. One must outlive the other. Wise men say. There are more women than men in the world. Condole with her. Your terrible loss. I hope you’ll soon follow him. For Hindu widows only. She would marry another. Him? No. Yet who knows after. Widowhood not the thing since the old queen died. ┌5Drawn on a guncarriage.5┐ Victoria and Albert. Frogmore memorial mourning. But in the end she put a few violets in her bonnet. Vain in her heart of hearts. All for a shadow. Consort not even a king. Her son was the substance. Something new to hope for not like the past she wanted back, waiting. It never comes. One must go first: alone, under the ground: and lie no more in her warm bed.
This short final insertion triggered the domino effect mentioned above, which caused Darantiere to move the text from the bottom of the page back and forth across both sides of the page proofs for the remainder of the episode (this was not an isolated incident). Joyce took the short 46-word paragraph about Paddy Dignam’s widow and over the course of two months on five separate documents, he transformed it into 151 words about Mrs. Dignam, Hindu death rituals, Queen Victoria, her husband’s funeral, her son, and the longing for a past that never returns—all of which takes place in the wandering thoughts of Leopold Bloom.
This process of layer by layer accretion was typical of Joyce’s writing methods from early drafts to final page proofs. It demonstrates that as Joyce gathered the material in his notebooks over a period of several years, he did not know precisely where he would use it. Instead, the notebooks had become part of his creative process. He organized the material he believed was appropriate for the various episodes and then while re-reading and revising the episodes over and over, he would find a place to add this collected material.
In his Critical and Synoptic Edition of Ulysses (UCSE), Hans Walter Gabler identified seven levels of revision for “Hades” that Joyce implemented for his revisions in 1921. This article will be following the chronological progression of the CSE and will explain what these levels mean along the way, what documents are involved, and at what time they were being used. Nearly every time Joyce received a set of placards or page proofs from Darantiere, he found a suitable place to insert more material that he had compiled in his notebooks. Some of this new material was just as somber as the older material, but much of it was clearly meant to be funny. By the time October 1921 rolled around, he had not only spent two months adding bits of material to “Hades,” at the same time he was also revising eleven other episodes and composing the later episodes (Crispi and Crowley).
Humor Comes to “Hades”
Throughout the episode many of the characters in “Hades” think about death and mortality. They are, after all, going to a cemetery to attend the funeral service for their friend, Paddy Dignam. Joyce had included many references to death and dying when he first published “Hades” in The Little Review in September, 1918. The episode contained some humor, but, as mentioned above, the overall mood of the episode was somber. In the revisions of 1921, however, after his mysterious five-week “vacation with [his] eyes,” Joyce began to add a tremendous amount of new material to “Hades,” much of which inserted more humor.
Level D (typescript overlay) The typescript that Joyce marked up and sent to The Little Review for publication in 1918. Three years later, he went back to the very same typescript to add new material before sending it off to Darantiere in Dijon, France.
Joyce began to add humor to “Hades” immediately as he began his revisions on this typescript overlay. In this first stage of revision, he has Bloom recall this detail about Molly while thinking about their aging bodies: “But the shape is there. The shape is there still. ┌(D) Shoulders. Hips. Plump. Night of the dance dressing. Shift stuck between the cheeks behind. (D)┐” The addition provides Bloom with a funny image to distract him from the fact that both he and Molly are getting older. Then a little later as Bloom contemplates “that last day idea,” Joyce added this frequently quoted pun: “That last day idea. Knocking them all up out of their graves. ┌DCome forth, Lazarus! And he came fifth and lost the job. D┐ Get up! Last day!” Joyce clearly did not want to forget this addition as he wrote it twice in the same notebook on facing pages. These notebooks (you can see via the National Library of Ireland) appear to be a simple list of these fragments and ideas, but they played a crucial role in Joyce’s creative process. As he added these notebook elements to the novel, they began to illustrate the manner in which he could turn these randomly collected fragments into a remarkable work of art.
Level 1 (first set of placards) The first setting of placards 10, 11, and 12, which comprise the entire episode. Upon receiving them, Joyce immediately began to add more material from his notebooks rather than simply proofreading them as was likely expected by Darantiere.
Joyce added the word “mortal” twice in this first version of the placards. He first used it in the phrase “mortal agony,” which he took from one of his notebooks, and he placed it into the dialogue between Martin Cunningham and Mr. Power as they arrived at the cemetery. The earliest draft of the conversation on the 1918 typescript has Cunningham tell Power, “You made it damned awkward talking of suicide before Bloom” and this is also how the scene appeared in The Little Review. in the first version of placard 11, Joyce struggled with the first part of the sentence. He crossed out “You made it damned awkward” and began to write something in the left margin to replace it, writing only, “I su,” but he crossed that out as well. On the placard (Harvard MS, see JJA 17: 225) he then wrote another phrase in the margin that he crossed out so completely to make it illegible. It was here that he inserted the phrase, “mortal agony” from his notebook, choosing the pun on the Latin word for death rather than to damnation and the underworld. His final version of the sentence reads: “┌1I was in mortal agony with you1┐ talking of suicide before Bloom.” This is one of the few times in the documents for this episode where you can see Joyce weighing his options on paper and making an artistic decision to go in one direction instead of the other. Being able to witness some of the process by which Joyce made these decisions demonstrates that for Joyce revision was an active, creative process, not simply a matter of inserting this notebook material into previously written text. Even at this late stage, we can see that Joyce was still in the act of creating Ulysses.
A cryptic fragment from the same notebook page, “¼ mourning,” becomes clear in this revision. Joyce inserted the fragment in the text at the point where the funeral carriage passes the Antient Concert Rooms when its meaning becomes clear. “Antient concert rooms. Nothing on there. A man in a buff suit with a crape armlet. Not much grief there. ┌1Quarter mourning.1┐ People in law perhaps.” In Bloom’s mind the term jokingly refers to someone who is just going through the motions of showing respect for the deceased by wearing only a black arm band, and who does not deem it necessary to dress in full, black mourning attire, nor to be present at the funeral. Without the phrase, Bloom’s thought could be read as an expression of disdain, but by adding this fragment, Joyce ensures that we read it in a funnier tone.
Later in the episode Joyce used the neighboring phrase on the same notebook page, “go out of mourning” in the first setting of placard 12 where he combined it with another short phrase, “joke about the dead,” found a few lines lower on the same page. Bloom is thinking about how the cemetery caretaker, John O’Connell, makes jokes to lighten the mood at the funeral, and then Joyce inserted these notebook phrases into Bloom’s thoughts: ┌1Daren’t joke about the dead for two years at least. Go out of mourning first1┐” And since Bloom just prohibited himself from joking about the dead, Joyce provides Bloom with a joke about the living to end the paragraph: ┌1Read your own obituary notice they say you live longer. Gives you second wind. New lease of life. 1┐” These are Bloom’s final thoughts before the mourners gather around for the interment of Dignam’s coffin. Before this addition, the paragraph ended with Bloom contemplating the caretaker’s funeral: “Hard to imagine his funeral. Seems sort of a joke.” With these new phrases Joyce ends Bloom’s current train of thought with something funny and life-affirming rather than the sad irony of the previous sentences.
Level 2 (Second set of placards) The second setting of placards 10, 11, and 12. Joyce continues to add more material from his notebooks. This is the final installment of placards for this episode.
On the second set of placards, Joyce added (among many other things) several alliterative phrases. As the funeral party gets settled in the carriage, Bloom thinks about how women prepare the body for a funeral: “Job seems to suit them. Huggermugger in corners. ┌2Slop about in slipperslappers for fear he’d wake. 2┐ Then getting it ready laying it out.” Just as with the “quarter mourning” insertion above, this addition makes it certain that the passage will be read in a lighter tone than it may have been otherwise.
Once they are at the cemetery, Bloom remembers the name of the priest, Father Coffey, and he recalls what Simon Dedalus said about his physical abilities, “Burst sideways like a sheep in clover Dedalus says he will. ┌2With a belly on him like a poisoned pup. 2┐ Most amusing expressions that man finds. Hhhn: burst sideways.” These alliterative phrases help to lighten the tone and they demonstrate how Joyce made Bloom’s thoughts, even in a somber situation, drift toward things that sound funny despite the fact that the matter at hand is not.
At this stage of revision Joyce supplies Bloom’s thoughts with more funny sounds as Bloom thinks about using a gramophone to remember the voice of people who have died. “Besides how could you remember everybody? Eyes, walk, voice. Well, the voice, yes: gramophone. Have a gramophone in every grave or keep it in the house. ┌2After dinner on a Sunday. Put on poor old greatgrandfather. Kraahraark! Hellohellohello amawfullyglad kraark awfullygladaseeagain hellohello amawf krpthsth. 2┐ Remind you of the voice like the photograph reminds you of the face.” Bloom here is thinking of the opportunity to hear the voice of a lost loved one as well as the quality of gramophone recordings. And just as in the other two examples, this section could have been read in a more serious tone until Joyce added the sound effects, ensuring that it be interpreted as funny.
Level 3 (first set of page proofs and final placards) This level is comprised of the first setting of page proof 6 and the final settings of placards 11 and 12. This indicates that Darantiere believed the early pages of the episode to be nearly complete, whereas the remainder of the episode was still subject to Joyce’s additions.
At this stage, the first 325 lines of text were set in page proof format. At this point Joyce was supposed to have finished adding new material, but of course he was not. At this level he added a lot of new popular culture references including songs, the names of local businesses, statues, and city landmarks. He added an entirely new paragraph starting with the pun, “┌3Dead side of the street this. Dull business by day 3┐,” as the carriage nears the top of O’Connell Street. This is another example of Bloom turning to lighter thoughts to distract himself from the events going on around him. In this case he (unaware of the need for last rites) had just suggested to his Catholic carriage mates that a sudden death was “the best death” and was met with stunned silence.
Joyce also added one of his favorite puns that he explained to Harriet Shaw Weaver several years later in a letter regarding particulars of Finnegans Wake. He points out to her the built-in pun between the name Peter and the Latin phrase “Tu es Petrus et super hanc petram etc. [Thou art Peter and upon this rock...]” and he signs off this letter, “yrs trly, Jeems Joker.” In his description of Father Coffey, Blooms thinks about the priest's considerable physique, “Woe betide anyone that looks crooked at him: priest. ┌3Thou art Peter 3┐.” Bloom is clearly thinking of the pun here and equating the priest’s muscular physique with a rock.
Joyce splits a phrase about cremation and the plague that he added to the typescript overlay (CSE Level D) and then he added even more at each of these first three levels of revision. He added two puns so that the final version reads:
┌DCremation better. ┌3Priests dead against it. Devilling for the other firm. Wholesale burners and Dutch oven dealers.3┐ ┌1Time of the plague. 1┐ ┌2Quicklime feverpits to eat them. 2┐ Lethal chamber. Ashes to ashes. Or bury at sea. Where is that Parsee tower of silence? Eaten by birds. D┐
This addition was adapted from the notebook entries, “no cremate RC” that appears as the final note for the episode in one notebook, and the lone word “devilling” from another. Note that this entire passage was constructed bit by bit during this two-month revision period. These two puns come from notes in two different notebooks, which confirms that Joyce was using multiple notebooks simultaneously as he revised this episode.
In a CSE level 1 addition mentioned above, Bloom says “Daren’t joke about the dead for two years at least.” Just before this prohibition Joyce now goes back and inserts a joke about the dead. Bloom is thinking about the caretaker cracking the occasional joke to lighten the mood, and this joke pops into his head: “Cracking his jokes too: warms the cockles of his heart. ┌3The one about the bulletin. Spurgeon went to heaven 4 a.m. this morning. 11 p.m. (closing time). Not arrived yet. Peter. 3┐ The dead themselves the men anyhow would like to hear an odd joke or the women to know what's in fashion.” Joyce seems to be doing exactly what he believes the caretaker to be doing—inserting the occasional joke to lighten the mood. It was also an opportunity for Joyce to get in one last joke about the dead before Bloom realizes that it might be in poor taste.
Level 4 (page proofs 6.2 and 7.1) At this stage the entire episode is set in page proof. Joyce, however, was not quite finished revising and he continued to add new material to the episode.
Joyce did not make very many additions at this point in the process, which indicates that he was nearly happy with the episode. The few additions that Joyce made at CSE level 4 were all funny, which suggests that Joyce was still actively trying to add as much humor as he possibly could to Paddy Dignam’s funeral. In the Little Review version of the episode, Joyce included several references to Hell. Here in the first setting of page proof 7, he added a few more, among them a single word from a notebook that must have been too tempting to pass up, and it is astounding that he waited this long to use it. The word “infernal” appears near the bottom of notebook MS 36,639/5/A p., and Joyce lifted it out and dropped it into the original Little Review sentence, “Must be a lot of bad gas round the place,” so that it now reads: “Must be ┌4[a] an infernal4┐ lot of bad gas round the place”. With this small addition Joyce created an additional allusion to Hell, torture and damnation; an allusion to Dante’s Divine Comedy; and also a pretty funny pun.
In a short paragraph that had remained unchanged since the first typescript in 1918, Bloom is thinking about Milly and being sensitive to her feelings by not showing up to visit her unannounced. The Little Review version reads, “She mightn't like me to come that way without letting her know. Must be careful about women. Fifteen.” The revised version now reads, “She mightn't like me to come that way without letting her know. Must be careful about women. ┌4Catch them once with their pants down. Never forgive you after. 4┐ Fifteen.” Interestingly, this phrase came from Buffalo notebook, V.A.2 in which Joyce had written the phrase “Mortified with her pants down.” This note includes the pun on death in the word “mortified”, but Joyce curiously did not use it here. Possibly he thought it was funnier without it, or he decided against it since he had already used the word “mortified” in the earlier revision noted above.
Level 5 (PP 6.3 and 7.2) This represents Joyce’s final stage of adding new material. At CSE level 6, Joyce was simply correcting typos and punctuation.
CSE level 5 is the third setting of page proof 6 and the second for page proof 7. Everything should definitely have been complete at this point, but still Joyce made six more additions. One of these comes as Bloom is making his way to the cemetery gates after the funeral. In a paragraph that Joyce expanded from six lines in The Little Review to twenty-two lines in the completed novel, Joyce allows Bloom to reflect on the impracticality of gravestones.
Mr Bloom walked unheeded along his grove by the saddened angels, crosses, broken pillars, family vaults, stone hopes praying with upcast eyes, old Ireland’s hearts and hands. ┌5 More sensible to spend the money on some charity for the living. 5┐ Pray for the repose of the soul of. Does anybody really? Plant him and have done with him. Like down a coalshoot.┌5 Then lump them together to save time. All souls’ day. 5┐
Here readers are offered another example of Bloom’s sensibility regarding money, which can be amusingly insensitive at times. In the second insertion, Bloom seems to be almost excited and already preparing the advertising slogan for this mass burial: “All souls’ day.”
Another addition that Joyce made at this level, and another that comes as a surprise that he waited so long to use it, comes after the caretaker tells a joke to a few of the mourners. Bloom’s thoughts meander from work, to shaving, to imagining what the caretaker’s love life must be like, and to Rudy’s conception at the window in Raymond Terrace. Joyce inserts one more random thought in this thread (again from the same Buffalo notebook, V.A.2): “┌5Did I write Ballsbridge on the envelope I took to cover when she disturbed me writing to Martha? Hope it’s not chucked in the dead letter office5┐.” This seems like an overt way to sneak in the phrase “dead letter office” into a chapter about a funeral, but it was clearly an opportunity that Joyce could not pass up.
At this final stage of additions, it seems that Joyce was scouring his remaining notes for every last bit of funny material. Among nearly five full pages of notes for this episode, only a handful of scattered words and phrases remained unused. Joyce managed to work nearly every bit of material he had gathered for “Hades” in just two months of revisions, which included the time it took each document to be delivered by post between Joyce and Darantiere, as well as the time spent on the other eleven episodes he was revising at the same time. By this point, “Hades” had been transformed from the somber episode readers encountered in The Little Review containing the occasional bit of humor to an episode balanced between the sorrow of several tragedies and the comedy that Joyce believed was “more perfect” than tragedy because it brings us joy rather than sorrow.
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———. 2008. Occasional, Critical, and Political Writing (OCPW), annotated edition. Oxford University Press, USA.
———. 1984. Ulysses: A Critical and Synoptic Edition, vols. 1-3. Edited by Hans Walter Gabler. New York. Garland Publishing, Inc.
———. 1918. “Ulysses Episode VI.” The Little Review 5, no. 5: 27.
Joyce, James, and Phillip F. Herring. 1977. Joyce's notes and early drafts for Ulysses: selections from the Buffalo collection. Charlottesville: University of Virginia.
Kiberd, Declan. 2009. Ulysses and Us: The Art of Everyday Life in Joyce’s Masterpiece. New York, NY: W.W. Norton & Co.
Lidderdale, Jane, and Mary Nicholson. 1970. Dear Miss Weaver: Harriet Shaw Weaver 1876-1961. London: Faber and Faber.
Pound, Ezra, James Joyce, and F. Read. 1967. Pound/Joyce; the Letters of Ezra Pound to James Joyce: With Pound’s Essays on Joyce. New Directions Publishing.
Rabaté, Jean-Michel. 1991. “‘Thank Maurice’: A Note About Maurice Darantiere.” Joyce Studies Annual Vol. 2, Summer 1991: 245–251.
Slote, Sam. Ulysses In The Plural: The Variable Editions of Joyce’s Novel. Joyce Studies 2004—05. (Dublin): The National Library Ireland, 2004.
Appendix B contains a list of 107 popular culture references added during the final revision stage between August and October of 1921.
Pound’s original spelling and emphasis
Lidderdale and Nicholson describe an
exchange between Joyce and Weaver in which he claimed to be “working sixteen
hours per day” on the proofs for Ulysses (190).
Ellmann reprints the text from a letter to Weaver from about the same time in which Joyce claims to “revise and correct with one or two eyes about twelve hours a day I should say, stopping for intervals of five minutes or so when I can’t see any more” (517).
Groden establishes that for eight episodes, including “Hades”, the text of the Rosenbach Manuscript falls outside the line of textual descent. The text that appears in Rosenbach was transcribed from earlier manuscripts. Therefore, concerning the genesis of the “Hades” episode, the text of the Rosenbach Manuscript is not textually significant.
The Little Review is a textual dead end simply because the very same typescripts used to print that publication were re-edited by Joyce and sent to Darantiere as the model for the first set of placards for Ulysses.
Darantiere’s surname is spelled throughout with no accent grave as it appears in Ellmann. According to a note by Melissa Banta and Oscar Silverman (1987), “Nowhere in the correspondence at Buffalo does Darantiere use an accent on his letterhead or when signing his name” (21). Jean-Michel Rabaté (1991) notes that, because the family took pride in their Italian ancestry, “the Darantieres always refused to have any accent, grave or acute, on their name, especially since the pronunciation would have remained the same” (245).
Clare Hutton, “The Development of Ulysses in Print, 1918-1922,” The Dublin
James Joyce Journal 6, 2014.
Hutton attaches the following caveats to the increase in the word count for this and all other episodes:
“Though the word counts (in Microsoft Word) have been checked, they are, of course, automatic: the algorithm of what counts as a word and what counts as a space would be different in another programme. The results would also be slightly different had it been possible to compare and collate digital copies of other relevant extant texts, such as the Rosenbach manuscript, and the first edition of 1922. But the results—the chapter by chapter percentage increases—would not be significantly different, and the point here is not the small detail but the broad conclusion.”
On 4 June 2009, a first edition with only the “Penelope” episode’s pages cut was sold at auction for £275,000 (Mark Brown). Ernest Hemingway’s copy of Ulysses was also famously uncut except for the earliest and final pages (Declan Kiberd, Ulysses and Us, 4).
Throughout this article Gabler’s insertion marks are left intact, and the new text is presented in bold in order to highlight the specific insertion in question.
UCSE 208:16; Buffalo NB V.A.2 p. 21; See also James Joyce and Philip F. Herring, Joyce's notes and early drafts for Ulysses: selections from the Buffalo collection, Charlottesville: University of Virginia, 1977, p. 93 for a full transcript of the notebook page.