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As part of Bedford/St. Martin''s innovative Case Studies in Contemporary Criticism series, this edition of The Dead, by James Joyce contains carefully seclected critical essays which approach the book from several contemporary critical perspectives.

About the Author

Daniel R. Schwarz is Frederic J. Whiton Professor of English Literature and Stephen H. Weiss Presidential Fellow at Cornell University, where he has taught since 1968. He is the author of the recent "In Defense of Reading: Teaching Literature in the Twenty-First Century" (2008) in the prestigious Blackwell Manifesto series, " Reading the Modern British and Irish Novel, 1890-1930" (2004), " Broadway Boogie Woogie: Damon Runyon and the Making of New York City Culture" (2003), as well as the widely read "Imagining the Holocaust" (1999). His prior books include "Rereading Conrad" (2001); "Reconfiguring Modernism: Explorations in the Relationship Between Modern Art and Modern Literature" (1997); "Narrative and Representation in Wallace Stevens" (1993), a Choice selection for best academic book of 1993;" The Case for a Humanistic Poetics" (1991); "The Transformation of the English Novel, 1890-1930" (1989; revised 1995); "Reading Joyce''s "Ulysses"" (Second Edition, 2004); "The Humanistic Heritage: Critical Theories of the English Novel from James to Hillis Miller" (1986); "Conrad: The Later Fiction" (1982); "Conrad: "Almayer''s Folly" through "Under Western Eyes"" (1980); and "Disraeli''s Fiction" (1979). He has edited Joyce''s" The Dead" (1994) and Conrad''s "The Secret Sharer" (1997) in the Bedford Case Studies in Contemporary Criticism Series, and was coeditor of "Narrative and Culture" (1994). He has also edited the Penguin" Damon Runyon" (2008). He served as consulting editor of the six-volume edition of "The Early Novels of Benjamin Disraeli" (2004) for which he wrote the General Introduction. He is General Editor of the multivolume critical series "Reading the Novel" for which he wrote "Reading the Modern British and Irish Novel, 1890-1930" (2004) and is now writing "Reading the European Novel." A founding member and former president of the society for the Study of Narrative Literature, he has published dozens of scholarly articles on British and American fiction and literary theory. Among his books are studies on Disraeli and Conrad as well as "Reading Joyce''s ULYSSES; The Transformation of the English Novel, 1890-1930"; and "The Case for a Humanistic Poetics.""

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4.3 out of 54.3 out of 5
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Top reviews from the United States

C.R. Hurst, Author of the Jane Digby's Diary Series
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Everything and Nothing
Reviewed in the United States on March 23, 2021
Spoiler Alert! Everything happens in The Dead - and nothing. Let me explain. James Joyce''s classic short story describes a Christmas party in which everything that you might expect in such a party occurs: dancing, sentimental songs, a speech, a drunken... See more
Spoiler Alert!

Everything happens in The Dead - and nothing. Let me explain.

James Joyce''s classic short story describes a Christmas party in which everything that you might expect in such a party occurs: dancing, sentimental songs, a speech, a drunken guest, and a political disagreement. The scene, though lovingly and faithfully described, is so mundane that you expect, something, anything, to evolve into some kind of conflict. The drunken guest becomes so drunk he throws a punch, or the political disagreement becomes heated and unpleasant. But nothing.

Instead Joyce presents us with a small moment in a marriage. A husband sees his wife listening to an old song, a sight that reignites his passion for her, only she is unresponsive, saddened by a memory of a lost love, long dead, that was reawakened by the old song. The husband is at first upset by the thought that his wife holds a memory that she never shared with him until now. But upon reflection he realizes that we all have such memories tucked inside our minds and hearts. They are everything and nothing. They are The Dead.
5 people found this helpful
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Gregory P. Hoadley
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Powerful
Reviewed in the United States on August 2, 2017
What an amazing little story. At first, the story is about a man and his wife who go to a party with their friends; in fact, this takes up about 60% of the narrative. But one gets the feeling that the main character is fairly self-assured with his life, and... See more
What an amazing little story.

At first, the story is about a man and his wife who go to a party with their friends; in fact, this takes up about 60% of the narrative. But one gets the feeling that the main character is fairly self-assured with his life, and especially his wife.

But then, a simple piece of music played toward the end of the party changes everything; I''m not going to say how as I don''t want to spoil it for the reader. Suffice to say, it is emotional, gripping, surprising, and a stunning reminder that sometimes, things are not as they appear to be, even with those whom we think we know inside and out.

If you wish to get into James Joyce, I can hardly think of a better place to start than here (and it helps that it''s free on Kindle!).
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D.P. Brennan
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A powerful novella set in Ireland
Reviewed in the United States on January 21, 2020
James Joyce’s “Christmas novella” concludes his masterful work of short stories entitled “Dubliners.” “The Dead” is a somber, richly ironic portrait of despair disguised as a cheerful dinner party where food, music and drink confront ghosts of the past. Gabriel Conroy’s... See more
James Joyce’s “Christmas novella” concludes his masterful work of short stories entitled “Dubliners.” “The Dead” is a somber, richly ironic portrait of despair disguised as a cheerful dinner party where food, music and drink confront ghosts of the past. Gabriel Conroy’s dreams of passion are suddenly drowned by his wife’s memory of a long lost love, Michael Furey.
4 people found this helpful
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tcbob
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Outstanding...and Beautiful
Reviewed in the United States on February 25, 2020
Joyce''s ability to describe scenes, his and others'' emotions is incredible. That he kept going in the absence of the admiration of his skills that came only after he died is remarkable.
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K. Ricklin
1.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
The Dead Illustrated Kindle Format - text missing or misplaced.
Reviewed in the United States on September 14, 2021
NOTE: This review is for the KINDLE version of "The Dead Illustrated". Beginning on page 3, a significant portion of the text - a number of paragraphs - that introduces Gabriel Conroy is missing or out of place. I have returned this version and will... See more
NOTE: This review is for the KINDLE version of "The Dead Illustrated".

Beginning on page 3, a significant portion of the text - a number of paragraphs - that introduces Gabriel Conroy is missing or out of place.

I have returned this version and will try another.
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Okemos56
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Story great; criticism representative but not innovative
Reviewed in the United States on November 16, 2016
I am reviewing the criticism of the Dead contained in this edition and not the story itself. The criticism of the stories from different schools are very representative if you don''t know them. I did, and I was hoping for highly-regarded and imaginative examples of each... See more
I am reviewing the criticism of the Dead contained in this edition and not the story itself. The criticism of the stories from different schools are very representative if you don''t know them. I did, and I was hoping for highly-regarded and imaginative examples of each style of criticism, this hope was not met, and, therefore I initially rated it down to far. I have moved it up one star accordingly. I still think more could and should have been done to ensure that the criticism was more innovative, but that''s only my opinion.
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Suzanne Read
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poetic, loving, sad, beautiful
Reviewed in the United States on January 11, 2013
The Dead is a short story taken from James Joyce''s The Dubliners (which is one of the best books I''ve ever read). The Dead is poetic, loving, sad, and beautiful...."why is it that words like these seem to me so dull and cold? Is it because there is no word tender enough to... See more
The Dead is a short story taken from James Joyce''s The Dubliners (which is one of the best books I''ve ever read). The Dead is poetic, loving, sad, and beautiful...."why is it that words like these seem to me so dull and cold? Is it because there is no word tender enough to be your name?...our path through life is strewn with many such sad memories, and were we to brood upon them always we could not find the heart to go on bravely with our work among the living... better to pass boldly into that that other world, in the full glory of some passion, than fade and wither dismally with age."
I pull this book out and reread, savoring each sentence, each time finding more gems like the quotes above. It is pure beauty!
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Shannon
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
reviewing the EDITION, not the story
Reviewed in the United States on February 16, 2015
"The Dead" is an absolute classic, and I am not giving three stars to James Joyce''s writing style. I am reviewing this particular edition. As I was just casually reading (not even trying to be picky), I noticed at least five spelling/punctuation errors. I... See more
"The Dead" is an absolute classic, and I am not giving three stars to James Joyce''s writing style.

I am reviewing this particular edition. As I was just casually reading (not even trying to be picky), I noticed at least five spelling/punctuation errors. I realize this sounds petty, but it''s distracting :(

There are other discrepancies from the text as seen in various editions of Dubliners. Just keep this in mind when ordering (in fact, I''d recommend just springing for Dubliners, because it is an excellent collection).
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Anne Hernon
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
wondering if I''d missed something and realising that it was just very understated but beautiful. I guess a great movie or book is ...
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 3, 2017
So many Told me to read this that I think I had it hyped up in my head. I found it unremarkable at first, but I kept on thinking about the ending.... wondering if I''d missed something and realising that it was just very understated but beautiful. I guess a great movie or...See more
So many Told me to read this that I think I had it hyped up in my head. I found it unremarkable at first, but I kept on thinking about the ending.... wondering if I''d missed something and realising that it was just very understated but beautiful. I guess a great movie or book is one where you take the story with you and still think of it years later. I can understand why it''s so highly thought of. I think I need to re read it already.
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monica
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A treat for winter
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on March 11, 2021
A marvellous story. Quiet and so well observed.
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Sohnee
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A master class in character writing
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 22, 2014
This is an interesting short story, fantastically well written and with amazing depth in the characters. This books is a lesson in writing for aspiring authors. This is a master class in character writing, but it is also an enjoyable read.
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Martin dyson
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
I’ll give it a read
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 31, 2018
Saw a good documentary on James Joyce and this short story was mentioned along with the film. So I thought I would give it a read.
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quedula
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Life , love & loss
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 10, 2018
A superbly written short story of life, love and loss which slowly builds to a poetic, heat-rending climax. A must read.
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