Reuben J Dodd

As the funeral carriage starts up O'Connell Street, Martin Cunningham points out "A tall blackbearded figure, bent on a stick," and says, "Of the tribe of Reuben." His reference to one of the twelve tribes of Israel implies that the man is Jewish, and the harsh remarks and derisive laughter that follow make up the strongest outburst of antisemitism in Hades. But the actual Reuben J. Dodd does not appear to have been Jewish. Perhaps Joyce credited a false rumor, but it seems more likely that he deliberately made Dodd Jewish in order to spotlight Bloom's uneasy outsider status in the carriage. The characters in the novel do not display any doubt about the question.

John Hunt 2023

Clanbrassil Street, the heart of Dublin's Jewish quarter, in three ca. 1950 photographs held in the Irish Jewish Museum. Source: