Centennial Celebration of James Joyce's Ulysses

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On February 2, 1922, James Joyce’s masterpiece, Ulysses, was published by Sylvia Beach, the American owner of the famous Shakespeare and Company bookstore in Paris, and the literary world was never the same.  Each year, Joyce fans around the globe come together on June 16, the day on which Ulysses is set, to commemorate the life of the Irish writer. Known as Bloomsday, the celebration is named after the book’s protagonist, Leopold Bloom. This June, the Consul General of Ireland, San Francisco Public Library, Mechanics Institute, Irish Culture Bay Area, the United Irish Cultural Center and the Irish Studies Program at University of California, Berkeley have organized a citywide, multi-event celebration in honor of the book’s centennial. “Bloomsbay will take place from June 1 through July 31, at various locations with activities for all ages.

For a full calendar of events visit, irishculturebayarea/bloomsbay. 

SFPL Bloomsbay Events 

  • International Joyce
    June 11 – October 13, 2022 
    Main Library, Skylight Gallery, 6th Floor
    For the 100th anniversary of the publication of Ulysses, we partner with the Consulate General of Ireland to present a small display of the life of Irish author James Joyce. This exhibit talks about his life in Ireland, his education, his travels through Europe and eventual residence in Paris. It also discusses the writing of his books DublinersPortrait of the Artist as a Young Man and of course Ulysses and Finnegans Wake.

  • Ulysses at 100
    June 1 – July 31
    Main Library, General Collections & Humanities Center, 3rd Floor
    A display of books by and about James Joyce.


  • World Literature Book Club Discusses James Joyce’s Ulysses
    June 2, 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. 
    Main Library, Latino/Hispanic Community Room, Lower Level
    In this event readers discuss what has been called the most influential novel of the 20th century, Ulysses.

  • Film: Shalom Ireland
    June 5, 2 p.m. 
    Main Library, Koret Auditorium, Lower Level
    Learn about Ireland’s small but mighty Jewish community at a screening of the documentary Shalom Ireland. Following the screening is a discussion about Irish Jewish identity and how it is represented in James Joyce’s Ulysses. With filmmaker Valerie Lapin Ganley and Dr. Joshua Gang, professor of English at UC Berkeley.

  • Author Talk: Ireland’s Ambassador to the U.S. Daniel Mulhall on His New Book, Ulysses: A Reader’s Odyssey  
    June 17, 1-2 p.m. 
    Virtual Library
    Daniel Mulhall, Ireland’s ambassador to the United States, reads from Ulysses: A Reader’s Odyssey, a warm, wise and highly enjoyable introduction to James Joyce’s classic novel Ulysses. The Irish author James Joyce published his groundbreaking modernist novel Ulysses in 1922, an event that profoundly influenced the course of world literature. While Joyce’s astonishing novel is quite international in its references and appeal, it is also profoundly Irish. As Mulhall observes, “No other writer managed, or even attempted, such a lavishly forensic portrait of Ireland, and that is why, especially for Irish people, reading Ulysses is an invaluable adventure.” With his deep knowledge of Irish literature and culture and his lifetime of experience with Irish history and politics, Mulhall is the ideal guide to this novel’s Irish settings and characters.   

Ulysses-inspired Book Lists