Joyce’s Source Books

The New Science by Giambattista Vico
This idiosyncratic philosophy of cyclical history inspired the structure of the Wake.

The Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri
In my opinion, the single most important inspiration to all of Joyce’s work.

The Golden Bough by James Fraser
No one seems sure how much Joyce used this book as a source, but I’ve found it incredibly useful.

Reference books

A Word in Your Ear by Eric Rosenbloom
This is book that first encouraged me to tackle the Wake, and still my favourite beginner’s introduction.

Joyce’s Book of the Dark by John Bishop
A fascinating academic study of the text.

Annotations to Finnegans Wake by Roland McHugh
Where would we be without it?

The Books at the Wake by James Atherton
An interesting survey of some of the key reference books Joyce used.

Lots of Fun at Finnegans Wake by Finn Fordham
The introduction gives a great summary of seven different ways to approach the book.

Recommendations from readers of the blog can be found (and left) in the comments here, and many more titles can be found here, courtesy of The Modern Word.

Online resources

The Joyce Scholars’ Collection at the University of Wisconsin is a goldmine of out-of-print Wake texts, but I find the First-Draft Version especially useful.
Finnegans Wake Extensible Elucidation Treasury is an invaluable search engine of Finnegans Wake annotations. I’d be lost without it.
UbuWeb has some great Finnegans Wake materials, including an audiobook, the film by Mary Ellen Bute, and the reading of Anna Livia Plurabelle by Joyce himself.

More resources

Other Joyce links