Even though Ulysses is situated in Dublin on Thursday, June 16th, 1904, the day author James Joyce first dated Nora Barnacle, the sooner our politicians call one of their rigged Citizens’ Assemblies to consign that date, that author and that screed to their naughty list, the sooner Ireland will be free of the book’s homophobic, Islamophobic, zoophobic and countless other non-inclusive prejudices.

Where else to begin but at the beginning in South Dublin Bay where “stately, plump Buck Mulligan” enjoys swimming, without wearing proper protective clothing, where dogs are allowed roam (and urinate) at will, where Mulligan drinks cows’ milk for breakfast and arranges to meet Joyce later for a liquid lunch in one of the countless pubs that pepper this non-inclusive tripe.

Straight away, then, Ulysses excludes Irish Muslims who tend to be wary of half-wild dogs as well as our vulnerable Hindu and vegan communities who have issues with cows’ milk and, no doubt, with loitering around the seedy pubs and sundry flop shops that “grace” this dreadful work.

Bloom’s subsequent entrance is even more inflammatory as this supposed Jew treats himself to a pork kidney for breakfast and, later, in the Ormond Hotel, he has liver slices and mashed potatoes in gravy for lunch, thereby further triggering not only Muslims, Hindus and vegans but Jews as well at a time when Limerick’s Holocaust was in full swing, where the anti-Semitic attacks Simon Lewis’ 57 Jewtown poems describes were raging in Cork and where Trinity College Professor A.J. Leventhal wrote of the then pending Holocaust in Dublin’s Little Jerusalem ghetto: “It became clear that we of Oakfield Place were regarded as strangers who, as such, ought to be liquidated”

James Joyce can no more plead ignorance of Limerick or, indeed, of Bloom’s Clanbrassil St, than can William Joyce, who was hanged for his sins of omission and commission. Limerick was so toxic that the 18 January 1904 edition of the Jewish Chronicle showed how triggered their reporter, was, as he recalled: “When I witnessed the organised attacks today and heard the mob yell ‘Down with the Jews: they kill our innocent children’, all the horrors of Kishineff came back to me and then, only then, was I able to realise what Kishineff meant”.

Nor was it just the Jewish Chronicle’s account Joyce pretended to miss. Though Limerick stalwart Bishop Dr Thomas Bunbury got the Church of Ireland synod to unanimously condemn “the genocide of both Jews and Anglicans in Limerick”, Joyce thought it more important to mock the dietary habits of our Muslim, Hindu, vegan and Jewish communities by celebrating the day Nora Barnacle first masturbated him on Sandymount Strand.

And why make Gerty MacDowell, whom Bloom jerks off to on Sandymount Strand, a cripple? Why else, some weak articles to the contrary, but to celebrate Nora Barnacle’s ableism and further denigrate the marginalised?

And then we have the rampant Popery with all its crimes against tender flesh and unformed minds. The Wandering Rocks Episode begins with Fr John Conmee, SJ, exiting Gardiner St Church. Even though Conmee passes some Christian Brothers’ boys, who doff their caps to him, the fact that Conmee, whom Joyce knew from Clongowes, does not immediately sodomise all three before thanking the Christian Brothers for grooming them, is outrageous and no less a qualified person than Senator David Norris has drawn attention to these sins of omission when he surveys Joyce’s work to shoe horn it into the sodomite narrative.

Norris, who scored a BA in English in more halcyon days from Trinity, in discussing Joyce’s The Sisters maintains “Father Flynn is something far more complex than a desire to fiddle with altar boys” as, in Norris’ undoubtedly informed opinion, that seems to be all priests and Irish Catholics have ever done. To underline his point, Norris tells us that An Encounter, another of Joyce’s short stories, also has “strong pederastic suggestions” because of, as he puts it, “the addiction of the Arab male to sodomitic practices with boys and youths”.

The implications of Norris’ path-breaking research is clear. Conmee should have been lynched on the tram and the Christian Brothers should have had their schools taken from them, along with their young charges because of “the addiction of the Arab male to sodomitic practices with boys and youths”.

Although Ulysses’ final scene has Molly Bloom, Leopold’s down-trodden slave-wife, fantasising about Hester Stanhope, a childhood friend she should have had a lesbian relationship with, it just confirms Norris’ point that homosexuals, lesbians and the entire trans community have been totally marginalised.

Yet Joyce (James not William) ignores all of that and, instead of larruping on, as Norris might have advised, about “the addiction of the Arab male to sodomitic practices with boys and youths”, he brings us to Barney Kiernan’s pub where The Citizen, a frothing, Islamophobic dog at his feet, is holding court. 

Now, as The Citizen who is apparently based on GAA founder Michael Cusack, is supposed to come across as a horrible Irish anti-Semite, Joyce has been praised for his depiction of Ireland’s very own Adolf Hitler but that is not the case at all. 

Because Cusack and his cronies come across as witty, heart of the roll types, who force Bloom to flee for his life from them, that pub scene, even laying to one side its zoophobia and Islamophobia, can only be interpreted as a victory for unrestrained fascism and, as such, as a direct contributory cause of Hitler’s Holocaust. Just as there can be no excuses for William Joyce, so also can there be no excuses for the more Jesuitical James Joyce.

Next, Bloom and Joyce meet up in Bella Cohen’s whorehouse, where Zoe Higgins, Florry Talbot, Kate Ricketts and the rest of the prostitutes seem to be neither trafficked from Nigeria nor empowered, like non-trafficked sex workers, such as the Wrens of the Curragh, should be. One can only hope that Dr Ebun Joseph, Professor Ivana Bacik and the Prostitutes’ Alliance will rectify those hate crimes before too long and help produce a Schofield Bible type edition of Ulysses, amply foot-noted so that we have no hope of ever having an informed, independent opinion of our own on it.

The real clues as to why such a revisionist edition is needed are laid very bare in Episode 8, Lestrygonians, where Bloom passes “Trinity’s surly front”, thinks of arch Fenian James Stephens and arch Hibernophobe Joe Chamberlain before spotting Parnell’s brother and George Russell (AE), the famous writer and mysticist.

When, on 18 December 1899 Trinity College’s imperialist apologists awarded Chamberlain an honorary degree for instigating the Boer genocide, Trinity’s surly front witnessed some of Dublin’s biggest ever riots as tens of thousands of Micky Mudds and Paddy Stinks tried to burst into its citadel to lynch the lot of them.

Nor was this a once-off as the Gaelic League, far and away Ireland’s most radical organisation, was at the pinnacle of its powers and they were threatening not only Trinity’s surly front but the pompous oafs who strutted about behind it. The Gaelic League, together with the Fenians, Larkinite syndicalists and Parnellite Land League veterans, mustered a very impressive 100,000 onto Dublin’s streets in 1910 (ten years before Ulysses was first published) to support Fr Michael Patrick O’Hickey, a professor of Irish at Maynooth College and a prominent Irish language campaigner.

Allied against O’Flaherty and his Micky Mudds were Trinity’s supremacists, who opposed giving the Irish language a foothold on the educational ladder as that would mean a better educated, more culturally aware and self-confident aboriginal population, which would be a direct threat to the privileged position their geniuses continue to enjoy to this day. In their attempts to banish Irish, a language of baboons as they call it, from the school curriculum, Trinity sent in their top guns. Sir John Pentland Mahaffy GBE CVO, Trinity’s Provost and the first of these apes, who would later go on, Nazi style, to burn the works of Patrick Pearse, GB Shaw and James Joyce himself, first entered the fray but, feeling the heat, got Robert Atkinson, his fellow-ape, to help him. George Russell, whom Bloom spots, denounced Mahaffy as a “blockhead of a professor drawn from the intellectual obscurity of Trinity” after Douglas Hyde showed Mahaffy’s ignorant remarks were based on those of Dr Robert Atkinson, Trinity’s professor of Sanskrit and comparative philogy, a Hibernophobe, an ignoramus, a racist and a prize fraud to boot.

Atkinson had dabbled in the Romance languages, Sanskrit, Tamil, Telugu, and a dolly mixture of other Indian vernacular languages, Hebrew, Persian, Arabic (whose male speakers, Norris tells us, are all sodomites), and some of the other languages of Central and Western Asia for which, on 11 January 1876, the Royal Irish Academy anointed him as Todd professor of the Celtic languages. Although Atkinson also fancied himself as a botanist and amateur violinist, and he got Trinity’s Provost to call Gaelic baboon Irish, his real forte was philology, where he sorted languages into inferior and superior languages, much like one would expect from any other Nazi. To Atkinson, Irish was a patois, not a language. Gaelic scholars exposed Atkinson as the shoddy, imported Trinity academic fraud that he was.

Even leaving aide that Joyce and Bloom only exchange some basic knowledge on Gaelic and Yiddish, that does not diminish Joyce’s fascination with all languages which, with Nora Barnacle, underscored both his entire life and all his major works. It is inconceivable that Joyce was not aware of how Trinity’s supremacists had been pummelled in those discussions, which were directly linked to the rise of the Abbey Theatre and many of the other cultural innovations Joyce wrote and mused about.

Bloom, shortly after we first meet him, is musing on how to cross Dublin without passing a pub. Although that riddle seems to have been recently solved, other, weightier academic Joycean puzzles will not be solved by those agenda-driven backwoodsmen who find the answers to all life’s problems in “the addiction of the Arab male to sodomitic practices with boys and youths.”

Literature, Joyce’s works included, are works of beauty that must be preserved and protected not so much from those with “homophobic, Islamophobic, zoophobic and countless other non-inclusive prejudices” but from those oafish book burners who shoehorn, Carthago Delenda Est style, their pet, petty canards into all academic and non-academic discourse.

Posted by Dr Declan Hayes

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