This week we read Dubliners, a collection of short stories written by James Joyce that chronicles the lives of many colorful characters in the city. In addition to reading about these characters and the city we were also able to look at a map of every named location throughout the book. With each of the fifteen different stories taking place within the city, I was surprised to see how many named locations were in other places around the world with locations as far west as the United States, as far south as Chile, and as far east as Australia all being named. Many of these locations are described as places that characters have visited or are originally from, detailing how diverse the inhabitants of the city are. This is an important component for Joyce to have included in his novel as it portrays Dublin as a unique blend of cultures from all over the world.
Within the city itself most of the story locations are clustered on the south side of the River Liffey and along O’Connell Street (formerly Sackville Street before 1924) to the north of the river with a few other locations sparsely spread throughout the city. The River Liffey is a major landmark of Dublin that runs right through the middle from west-east while O’Connell street is another major landmark that is the widest and perhaps main street of the city. The location of this cluster is particularly interesting because in a zoomed out map of the city this appears to be the exact center, the Heart of Dublin. With the port of Dublin directly to the east and rest of the city surrounding it on the north, west, and south like a crescent moon it makes sense that most of the locations in a novel titled Dubliners occur in a central part of the city. It is also impressive how many different locations Joyce was able to detail in his novel, demonstrating his impressive knowledge and familiarity with the city.