Two stories from James Joyce’s banned “Dubliners” will be read aloud and discussed at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 17.
The story hour for grownups will take place at The Nunnery Inn and Hostel, 639 John St., Little Falls, as part of the monthly Third Thursday Little Falls festivities.
“James Joyce’s 1904 collection of short stories was rejected by at least 40 publishers and print shops and was banned in many countries, including Ireland and the United States. In fact, ‘Dubliners’ could not be purchased in Ireland until 1982, the 100th anniversary of the author’s birth,” said Robert Albrecht, organizer of the story hour series, in a news release. “It’s always good to look carefully at the words and ideas that someone else arbitrarily decides are dangerous, and when governments and other powerful institutions do the banning, we should be especially inquisitive.”
The story hour’s readers will be Tom Malley, who will read a story about the living dead and All Hallows Eve, and Matt Powers, who will read a story about a physically and spiritually paralyzed parish priest.
“James Joyce loved Ireland, but he loved it so much that he could not live there and see those forces which held the Irish people in bondage,” said Albrecht. “Like other prophets, Joyce wrote to awaken an entire society and culture. He wrote to disturb our peace.”
Jim Felix, co-proprietor of The Nunnery Inn operated in the former St. Mary’s Convent, said brief tours of the building will be available at the end of the evening. Irish-themed baked goods will be available for purchase.
“It’s seems entirely appropriate that an author who struggled so with his Catholicism be enjoyed in an old stone building where the scents of incense and beeswax might still be imagined,” said Albrecht
The story hour is designed to mimic the elementary school hours where stories were read aloud to the children for their pleasure and learning.
The November story hour will feature Alfred McDowell reading two stories by Frank O’Connor.