Poor little Rudy

Bloom's thought of "poor little Rudy" in Calypso complements his thoughts of "poor Dignam." Both deaths are fleshed out two chapters later, when he reflects on mortality in Hades. But the loss of Bloom's second child is more than a source of continuing grief. It is also the most significant factor in the sexual dysfunction that is imperiling his marriage. His inability to perform in bed seems to stem not only from a desire to avoid the trauma of further loss, but also from a feeling that he was responsible for Rudy's failure to thrive.

JH 2017

Victorian postmortem photograph of infant in coffin. Source: www.pinterest.com.

Victorian postmortem photograph of siblings in coffin. Source: www.pinterest.com.