Parnell's demise sent shockwaves around Ireland. Hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of Irish people felt hurt and betrayed. Irish patriots clashed - mostly verbally but sometimes quite literally, too - with patriots of the Catholic Church, both sides hurling bitter accusations at each other, neither side willing to give the opponents' arguments even the least consideration. Not only communities but also circles of friends, and even households became deeply divided, the gulf between the two camps widening by a minute. Nothing short of a miracle could bridge that gulf, and in real life - unlike in fairy tales - miracles are extremely few and very far between. Wonders aren't a commonplace either but, at least, they do happen every now and then. One such wonder did happen to the end-of-the-19th-century Ireland, and that wonder had a first name and a family name. It was called James Joyce. When Parnell died, the wonder was 9-years-old.
Even as a child, Joyce must have been just as affected by the national tragedy as most of his compatriots. Quite likely, he would have his own strong opinions - and feel intolerant of the opposite ones. However, Joyce was also an artist (as writers are, in a way, Artists of the Word) - and, as such, he would identify with each and every character he created, and willy-nilly represent and reconcile their opinions (however clashing they might be) in his works. It so happened that all Joyce had been writing about was his native country and its people, notwithstanding the fact that he lived abroad since the age of 22. His first significant published work was a collection of 15 short stories titled “Dubliners”.
On the surface, “Dubliners” might look like a “naturalistic depiction of Irish middle class life in and around Dublin in the early years of the 20th century”. A more thoughtful analysis would present a much more nuanced picture: larger-than-life - yet very faithfully depicted - characters involved in a whole network of complex relationships. Combined with meticulous precision of physical locations, and considering that almost all “Dubliners”' characters were transitioned into Joyce's later works, one has to conclude that, taken together, the stories essentially reinvent Dublin (by then a 1100-or so-years-old city). In other words, already with “Dubliners, Joyce began what can be literally called ”God's Work" by creating…well, not exactly the Heavens and the Earth as a whole but still a part of the Earth with a variety of life on it. Unsurprisingly, some other artists working in different arts and genres eventually tried to follow suit. One of them “translated” Joyce's book into “paintish”, his efforts resulting in 15 illustrations, one per “Dubliners”' story…