#9: A single page from Helen Joyce’s “Portrait of the Artist by his Daughter-in-law,” begun in 1955. James Joyce Collection, Harry Ransom Center, 7.3
by CLARE HUTTON
This is the ninth article in a series devoted to objects that tell the story of women who supported author James Joyce and the publication of his landmark novel, Ulysses (1922). Learn more in the exhibition, Women and the Making of Joyce’s Ulysses, curated by Dr. Clare Hutton and on view through July 17, 2022. Subscribe to eNews to receive all the articles in this series.
In chapter 9 of Ulysses when Haines asks Buck Mulligan whether Stephen Dedalus has written anything “for your movement,” Mulligan responds with derision, saying that Dedalus is “going to write something in ten years.” Writing is something that can always be put off, and writers who commit to writing regularly and for publication are the exception not the rule. Writing is difficult, after all. Difficult, but necessary: particularly if you want certain things to be remembered.
Helen Kastor Fleischman (1894–1963) married Giorgio Joyce, Joyce’s son, on December 10, 1930. She was more than 10 years older than Giorgio and the marriage did not last, following her nervous breakdowns in 1938 and 1939. In the intervening years there were, however, many happy moments, particularly with Giorgio’s parents, and these are remembered here, in an unpublished typed memoir begun after seeing an obituary notice for Adrienne Monnier, who died in June 1955.