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These vivid, tightly focused observations about the life of Dublin's poorer classes originally made publishers uneasy: the stories contain unconventional themes and coarse language, and they mention actual people and places. Today, however, the stories are admired. They are considered to be masterful representations of Dublin done with economy and grace - representations, as Joyce himself once explained, of a chapter in the moral history of Ireland that give the Irish a good look at themselves. Although written for the Irish specifically, these stories - from the opening tale "The Sisters" to the final masterpiece "The Dead" - focus on moments of revelation that are common to all people.
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