A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man is the first novel of Irish writer James Joyce. A Künstlerroman in a modernist style, it traces the intellectual and religio-philosophical 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. The work uses techniques that Joyce developed more fully in Ulysses (1922) and Finnegans Wake (1939). A Portrait began life in 1903 as Stephen Hero-a projected 63-chapter autobiographical novel in a realistic style. After 25 chapters, Joyce abandoned Stephen Hero in 1907 and set to reworking its themes and protagonist into a condensed five-chapter novel, dispensing with strict realism and making extensive use of free indirect speech that allows the reader to peer into Stephen's developing consciousness. American modernist poet Ezra Pound had the novel serialised in the English literary magazine The Egoist in 1914 and 1915, and published as a book in 1916 by B. W. Huebsch of New York. The publication of A Portrait and the short story collection Dubliners (1914) earned Joyce a place at the forefront of literary modernism. In 1998, the Modern Library named the novel third on its list of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century. Born to a middle-class family in Dublin, Ireland, James Joyce (1882-1941) excelled as a student, graduating from University College Dublin in 1902. He moved to Paris to study medicine, but soon gave it up. He returned to Ireland at his family's request as his mother was dying of cancer; despite her pleas, the impious Joyce and his brother Stanislaus refused to make confession or take communion, and when she passed into a coma refused to kneel and pray for her. He took jobs teaching, singing, and reviewing books while drinking heavily. Joyce made his first attempt at a novel, Stephen Hero, in early 1904. That June he met Nora Barnacle, with whom he eloped to Europe, first staying in Zürich before settling for ten years in Trieste in Austria-Hungary, teaching English. There, Nora gave birth to their children George in 1905 and Lucia in 1907, and Joyce wrote fiction, signing some of his early essays and stories "Stephen Daedalus"; the short stories he wrote were to make up Dubliners (1914). He reworked the core themes of the novel Stephen Hero he had begun in Ireland in 1904 and abandoned in 1907 into A Portrait, published in 1916, a year after moving back to Zürich in the midst of World War I.
James Joyce (1882-1941) is regarded as one of the most influential and important authors of the twentieth century. After graduating from University College Dublin, Joyce went to Paris. During World War One, Joyce and Barnacle, and their two children, Giorgio and Lucia, moved to Zurich where Joyce began Ulysses. He returned to Paris for two decades, and his reputation as an avant-garde writer grew. Joyce's works include the short story collection Dubliners (1914); novels A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (1916), Ulysses (1922) and Finnegans Wake (1939); two poetry collections Chamber Music (1907) and Pomes Penyeach (1927); and one play, Exiles (1918). Every year on 16 June, Joyceans across the globe celebrate Bloomsday, the day on which the action of Ulysses took place, proving Joyce's importance to literature.