James Joyce's "Chamber Music"


This is by no means a comprehensive bibliography of scholarly work on Joyce (just imagine!), or indeed on the use and representation of music in Joyce’s work. Rather, it’s a list of some of the works that have been specifically used and cited in the preparation of this resource, plus some other sources that I thought might be interesting and / or useful in the context.

The first dedicated critical edition of Chamber Music was written by the American scholar William York Tindall and published in New York by Columbia University Press in 1954. Other scholarly editions, include: A. Walton Litz, Chamber Music, Pomes Penyeach, and Occasional Verse (New York and London: Garland, 1978); Poems and Exiles, edited by J.C.C. Mays and published in London by Penguin in 1992 (pp. 3-40); Poems and Shorter Writings, edited by Richard Ellmann, A. Walton Litz and John Whittier-Ferguson (London: Faber & Faber, 1991), pp. 12-48; and Joyce: Poems and a Play (New York: Everyman, 2014), pp. 11-46.

The standard biography remains Richard Ellmann’s James Joyce (1959; New York: Oxford University Press, 1983). Also worth consulting are Peter Costello, James Joyce: The Years of Growth - 1882-1915 (London: Kyle Cathie, 1992); Herbert S. Gorman, James Joyce: His First Forty Years (New York: Viking Press, 1924), and James Joyce: A Definitive Biography (London: John Lane, 1941); Harry Levin, James Joyce (New York: New Directions, 1941); and Brenda Maddox, Nora: The Real Life of Molly Bloom (Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1988).

Indispensable for an appreciation of the social, familial and artistic milieu within which the youthful Joyce was working are two books by his brother Stanislaus: My Brother’s Keeper: James Joyce’s Early Years (1958: Cambridge, MA: Da Capo Press, 2003), and The Complete Dublin Diary, ed. George H. Healey (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1962).

The following are rare but useful sources on Joyce’s adolescence and students days: J.F. Byrne, Silent Years: An Autobiography with Memoirs of James Joyce and Our Ireland (New York: Farrar, Straus and Young, 1953); Arthur Clery, Dublin Essays (Dublin: Maunsel, 1919); Padraic Colum, The Road Round Ireland (New York: Macmillan, 1926); Mary Colum and Padraic Colum, Our Friend James Joyce (London: Victor Gollancz, 1959); C.P. Curran, James Joyce Remembered (London: Oxford University Press, 1968); Patricia Hutchins, James Joyce’s Dublin (London: Grey Walls Press, 1950); Eugene Sheehy, May It Please the Court (Dublin: C.J. Fallon, 1951).

Joyce's Critical Pronouncements

Also worth consulting are Joyce's critical pronouncements on aesthetic matter, many of them in the form of review. From Kevin Barry's edition of Joyce's Occasional, Critical and Political Writing (200), the following item are of especial significance for his own poetry: 

‘Drama and Life’ (23-9)
‘The Day of the Rabblement’ (50-2)
‘James Clarence Mangan’ (53-69)
‘An Irish Poet’ (61-3)
‘Colonial Verses’ (70)
‘The Soul of Ireland’ (74-6)
‘Unequal Verse’ (87)
‘Mr. Arnold Graves’s New Work’ (88-9) ‘A Neglected Poet’ (90)
‘Shakespeare Explained’ (97-8)
‘Aesthetics’ (102-7)
‘The Irish Literary Renaissance’ (137)
‘Oscar Wilde: The Poet of “Salomé”’ (148-51)
‘Realism and Idealism in English Literature’ (163-82)
‘The Universal Literary Influence of the Renaissance’ (187-90)


Daniel Albright, ‘Beckett as Marsyas: Music and Modernism in Beckett’, Bullán: An Irish Studies Journalp 3.2 (Winter 1997/Spring 1998), pp. 31-46

John Allen, ‘Italian Opera in Dublin’ in Richard Pine (ed.), Music in Ireland 1848-1998 (Cork: Mercier Press, 1998), pp. 56-64

Chester G. Anderson, ‘Joyce’s Verses’, in Zack Bowen and James F. Carens (eds), A Companion to Joyce Studies (Westport, CT: Greenwood, 1984), pp. 129-55
-- James Joyce (London: Thames & Hudson, 1986)

James Anderson Winn, Unsuspected Eloquence: A History of the Relations between Poetry and Music (New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1981)

Alex Aronson, Music and the Novel: A Study of Twentieth-Century Fiction (New Jersey: Rowman and Littlefield, 1980)

Matthew Arnold, On The Study of Celtic Literature (1867; London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1900)

Jacques Aubert, The Aesthetics of James Joyce (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1992)

Kevin Barry, Language, Music and the Sign: A Study of Aesthetics, Poetics and Poetic Practice from Collins to Cambridge (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1987)

Roland Barthes, Image - Music - Text, trans. Stephen Heath (London: Fontana, 1977)
-- A Lover’s Discourse: Fragments (1977, trans. Richard Howard; London: Vintage, 2002)

Ruth H. Bauerle, The James Joyce Songbook (New York: Garland, 1982)
-- (ed.), Picking up Airs: Hearing the Music in Joyce’s Text (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1993)

Philip E. Bennett and Richard Firth Green (eds), The Singer and the Scribe: European Ballad Traditions and European Ballad Cultures (Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2004)

Karol Berger and Anthony Newcomb (eds), Music and the Aesthetics of Modernity: Essays (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2005)

Walter Bernhart, Steven Scher and Werner Wolf (eds), Word and Music Studies: Defining the Field (Amsterdam: Rodopi, 1999)

Bernard Benstock (ed.), James Joyce: The Augmented Ninth (Syracuse: Syracuse University Press, 1988)

William F. Blissett, ‘George Moore and Literary Wagnerism’ in Graham Owens (ed.), George Moore’s Mind and Art (Edinburgh: Oliver and Boyd, 1968), pp.53-76

Allan Bloom, Shakespeare on Love and Friendship (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2000)

Mark W. Booth, ‘Oral Ballad’ (pp. 55-74), and ‘Art Song’ (pp. 75-96), in The Experience of Songs (New York: Yale University Press, 1981)

Zack Bowen, ‘Goldenhair: Joyce’s Archetypal Female’, Literature and Psychology 17 (1967), pp. 219-28
-- Musical Allusions in the Works of James Joyce: Early Poetry through Ulysses (Albany, NY: State University of New York Press, 1974)

Andrew Bowie, Music, Philosophy, and Modernity (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2007)

Robert Boyle, ‘The Woman Hidden in James Joyce’s Chamber Music’, in Suzette Henke and Elaine Unkeless (eds), Women in Joyce (Brighton: Harvester Press, 1982), pp. 3-30

Calvin S. Brown, Music and Literature: A Comparison of the Arts (Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press, 1948)

Malcolm Brown, The Politics of Irish Literature from Thomas Davis to W.B. Yeats (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1972)

Richard Brown, James Joyce and Sexuality (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1985)

Terence Brown, ‘Music: The Cultural Issue’ in Richard Pine (ed.), Music in Ireland 1848-1998 (Cork: Mercier Press, 1998), pp. 37-45

Ian Buchanan and Marcel Swiboda (eds), Deleuze and Music (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2004)

Brad Bucknell, Literary Modernism and Musical Aesthetics: Pater, Pound, Joyce, and Stein (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2001)

Bojan Bujic, Music in European Thought 1851-1912 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988)

Ciaran Carson, Last Night’s Fun: A Book about Music, Food and Time (London: Pimlico, 1997)

Marcia Citron, Gender and the Musical Canon (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993)

Martin Clayton, Trevor Herbert and Richard Middleton (eds), The Cultural Study of Music: A Critical Introduction (London: Routledge, 2003)

Nancy Anne Cluck (ed.), Literature and Music: Essays on Form (Provo, Utah: Brigham Young University Press, 1981)

Marc C. Connor (ed.), The Poetry of James Joyce Reconsidered (Gainesville, FL: University of Florida Press, 2012)

Seán Crosson, ‘The Given Note’: Traditional Music and Modern Irish Poetry (Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Press, 2008)
Robert H. Deming (ed.), James Joyce – The Critical Heritage: Volume One – 1902-1927 (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1970)

Umberto Eco, The Middle Ages of James Joyce (London: Hutchinson Radius, 1989)

Richard Ellmann, Yeats: The Man and the Mask (1949; London: Faber & Faber, 1960)
-- (ed.), Selected Letters of James Joyce (London: Faber & Faber, 1975)
-- The Consciousness of Joyce (London: Faber, 1977)

Nicholas A. Fargnoli and Michael P. Gillespie, Joyce A to Z (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1986)

Daniel Fischlin, In Small Proportions: A Poetics of the English Ayre, 1596-1622 (Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1998)

Roy Foster, W.B. Yeats – A Life: I – The Apprentice Mage (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 1998)

George L. Geckle, ‘The Dead Lass of Aughrim’, Éire-Ireland: A Journal of Irish Studies 9 (1974), pp. 86-96

Gerard Gillen and Harry White (eds), Irish Musical Studies: Musicology in Ireland (Dublin: Irish Academic Press, 1990)

Eamon Grennan, Facing the Music: Irish Poetry in the Twentieth Century (Omaha, Neb.: Creighton University Press, 1999)

William E. Grim, ‘Musical Form as a Problem in Literary Criticism’ in Bernhart, Scher and Wolf (1999), pp. 237-48

Cyrus Hamlin, ‘The Romantic Song Cycle as Literary Genre’, in Bernhart, Scher and Wolf (1999), pp. 113-34

Eduard Hanslick, The Beautiful in Music: A Contribution to the Revisal of Musical Aesthetics (7th ed. 1885, trans. G. Cohen; New York: Da Capo Press, 1974)

Clive Hart )ed.), Conversations with James Joyce (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1982)

Matthew C. Hidgart and Mabel P. Worthington, Song in the Works of James Joyce (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1959)

Herbert Howarth, ‘James Joyce, Irish Poet’, James Joyce Quarterly 2.4 (Summer 1965), pp. 255-70
-- ‘Chamber Music and its Place in the Joyce Canon’, in Thomas F. Staley (ed.), James Joyce Today: Essays on the Major Works (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1966), pp. 11-27

Earl G. Ingersoll, ‘Who Is Bartell D’Arcy and Why Does He Sing in Both ‘The Dead’ and Ulysses?’ in Irish University Review, 23.2 (Autumn/Winter 1993), pp. 250-57

James Joyce, Dubliners (1914; Oxford: Oxford World’s Classics, 2000)
-- A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (1916; Oxford: Oxford World’s Classics, 2000)
-- Ulysses (1922; Oxford: Oxford World’s Classics, 1993)
-- Stephen Hero (1944; London: Jonathan Cape, 1969)
-- Giacomo Joyce (1959; London: Faber and Faber, 1983)
-- Finnegans Wake (1939; London: Wordsworth, 2012)
-- Occasional, Critical and Political Writings, ed. Kevin Barry (Oxford: Oxford World’s Classic, 2000)

Hugh Kenner, Dublin’s Joyce (Boston: Beacon, 1956)

Declan Kiberd, Inventing Ireland (London: Jonathan Cape, 1995)

Søren Kierkegaard, Repetition: An Essay in Experimental Psychology (1843), trans. Walter Lowrie (New York: Harper & Row, 1964)

Peter Kivy, The Corded Shell: Reflections on Musical Expression (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1980)
-- Music Alone: Philosophical Reflections on the Purely Musical Experience (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1990)

Sebastian D. G. Knowles, Bronze by Gold: The Music of James Joyce (New York: Garland, 1999)

Lawrence Kramer, Music as Cultural Practice, 1800-1900 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1990)

Roger Kuin, Chamber Music: Elizabethan Sonnet-Sequences and the Pleasure of Criticism (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1998)

Roger Lhombreaud, Arthur Symons: A Critical Biography (London: Unicorn Press, 1963)

Jill Line, Shakespeare and the Fire of Love (London: Shepheard-Walwyn, 2004)

David Lloyd, Nationalism and Minor Literature: James Clarence Mangan and the Emergence of Irish Cultural Nationalism (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988)
-- Anomalous States: Irish Writing and the Post-Colonial Moment (Dublin: Lilliput, 1993)

Suzanne M. Lodato and David Francis Urrows (eds), Word and Music Studies: Essays on Music and the Spoken Word and on Surveying the Field (Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2005)

Archie K. Loss, ‘The Pre-Raphaelite Woman, the Symbolist “Femme-Enfant”, and the Girl with Long Flowing Hair in the Earlier Work of Joyce’, Journal of Modern Literature 3.1 (February 1973), pp. 3-23

F.S.L. Lyons, Culture and Anarchy in Ireland 1890-1939 (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1979)

John McCourt, James Joyce: A Passionate Exile (London: Orion, 2000)

Randy Malamud, ‘“Where the Heart Is”: Interstices of Joyce’s Poetry and Fiction’, South Atlantic Review 64.1 (Winter 1999), pp. 91-101

Winifred Maynard, Elizabethan Lyric Poetry and Its Music (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1986)

Virginia Moseley, ‘The “Perilous Theme” of Chamber Music’, James Joyce Quarterly 1.3 (Spring 1964), pp. 19-24

Jean-Jacques Nattiez, ‘Can One Speak of Narrativity in Music?’, Journal of the Royal Musical Association 115 (1990) pp. 240-57

James G. Nelson, ‘James Joyce’s First Publisher: Elkin Mathews and the Advent of Chamber Music’, James Joyce Quarterly 23.1 (Fall 1985), pp. 9-29

Northrop Frye, Anatomy of Criticism: Four Essays (Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1957)

Sean O’Boyle, The Irish Song Tradition (Dublin: Dalton, 1976)

Seán Ó Riada, Our Musical Heritage (1962; Portlaoise: Dolmen Press, 1982)

Forrest Read (ed.), Pound / Joyce (New York: New Directions, 1967)

Ernest Renan, ‘The Poetry of the Celtic Races’ (1859), reproduced in Mark Storey (ed.), Poetry and Ireland Since 1800: A Source Book (London: Routledge, 1988), pp. 54-60

Judy Schavrien, ‘Joyce, Shakespeare, and Pulsebeat Poetry’, James Joyce Quarterly 18.2 (1981), pp. 177-87

Robert Scholes, ‘James Joyce, Irish Poet’, James Joyce Quarterly 2.4 (Summer 1965), pp. 255-70

Robert Scholes and Richard M. Kain (eds), The Workshop of Daedulus: James Joyce and the Raw Materials for A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (Noyes St. Evanston, Il: Northwestern University Press, 1965)

Tracey Teets Schwarze, Joyce and the Victorians (Gainesville, FL: University of Florida Press, 2002)

Bonnie Kime Scott, Joyce and Feminism (Brighton: Harvestor, 1984)

John J. Slocum and Herbert Cahoon (eds), A Bibliography of James Joyce, 1882-1941 (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1953)

Gerry Smyth, Music in Irish Cultural History (London: Irish Academic Press, 2009)

Robert Spoo, ‘Rival Confessors in Chamber Music: Meaning and Narrative in Joyce’s Lyric Mode’, James Joyce Quarterly 26.4 (Summer 1989), pp. 483-98

Martin Stokes (ed.), Ethnicity, Identity and Music: The Musical Construction of Place (Oxford: Berg, 1994)
Arthur Symons, ‘A Book of Songs’, Nation 73 (22 June 1907), p. 639

Myra Teicher Russel (ed.), James Joyce’s Chamber Music: The Lost Song Settings (Bloomington and Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 1993)

Mary Trachsel, ‘Oral and Literate Constructs of “Authentic” Irish Music’,  Éire-Ireland: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Irish Studies 30.3 (1995), pp. 27-46

Laura Tunbridge, The Song Cycle (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010)

Jack W. Weaver, Joyce’s Music and Noise: Theme and Variation in His Writings (Gainesville, FL: University Press of Florida, 1998)

Kevin Whelan, ‘The Memories of “The Dead”’, Yale Journal of Criticism 15.1 (2002), pp. 59-97

Harry White, The Keeper’s Recital: Music and Cultural History in Ireland, 1770-1970 (Cork: Cork University Press, 1998)
-- Music and the Irish Literary Imagination (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008)

W.B. Yeats, The Complete Poems, ed. Daniel Albright (London: Dent, 1990)