A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man is a 1916 novel and cornerstone of literary modernism by Irish author James Joyce. The story follows Stephen Dedalus, Joyce's fictional alter-ego, and charts his path to personal and artistic maturity through his stream of consciousness. This is a non-linear narrative style typical of modernist prose in which a character's thoughts, feelings, and reactions are portrayed in a continuous flow and often disrupt the linear narrative of events and dialogue in the story.
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (1916) is Joyce's first novel. Written in the modernist style, it traces the religious and intellectual awakening of young Stephen Dedalus, a fictional alter ego of Joyce and an allusion to Daedalus, the consummate craftsman of Greek mythology. Stephen questions and rebels against the Catholic and Irish conventions under which he has grown, culminating in his self-exile from Ireland to Europe.
"A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man" represents the transitional stage between the realism of Joyce's Dubliners and the symbolism of Ulysses, and is essential to the understanding of the later work. The novel is a highly autobiographical account of the adolescence and youth of Stephen Dedalus, who reappears in Ulysses, and who comes to realize that before he can become a true artist, he must rid himself of the stultifying effects of the religion, politics and essential bigotry of his background in late 19th century Ireland. Written with a light touch, this is perhaps the most accessible of Joyce's works.
Includes the unabridged text of Joyce's classic novel plus a complete study guide that helps readers gain a thorough understanding of the work's content and context. The comprehensive guide includes chapter-by-chapter summaries, explanations and discussions of the plot, question-and-answer sections, author biography, analytical paper topics, list of characters, bibliography, and more.