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Author Topic: Let's talk James Joyce.  (Read 447 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: February 21, 2012, 02:16:41 AM »

I wanted to do a thread in the Book Club section where we can read Ulysses and have a discussion. However, I feel that I need a better exposure to the history of Ireland, read Hamlet and The Odyssey again before takling Ulysses.

I tried reading Ulysses once about 3-4 years ago. It really kicked my butt intellectually, and I felt I wasn't smart enough to read it. So I gave up during Aeolus, conceded that Joyce was too much of a genius for me to even comprehend, and each chapter employed such different and new styles.

Going through Joycean criticsm, I'm ready to give this novel another go. I would love to have a really good guide alongside the book so I pick up on all the things Joyce packs in each chapter (I swear he redifined "dense").

If I think Ulysses was this bad, I can't even imagine how Finnegans Wake is going to be. I know I'm terribly unreasonable and insane so maybe the book can work for me, or maybe not.

Almost done with Moby Dick so I'll start with Joyce in a bit.

Anyone like or hate Joyce? Recommendations to help with reading Ulysses or any of Joyce's other poems, short stories and novels?
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« Reply #1 on: February 21, 2012, 02:23:25 AM »

Anyone [...] hate Joyce?

Yes.

Recommendations to help with reading Ulysses or any of Joyce's other poems, short stories and novels?

Don't.
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« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2012, 06:00:49 AM »

akimori what do you mean hate and don't?

================

I found this book to be a good companion:

http://www.amazon.com/New-Bloomsday-Book-Through-Ulysses/dp/0415138582/ref=cm_cr_dp_orig_subj

From what it appears to be.

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« Reply #3 on: February 21, 2012, 04:56:23 PM »

Anyone [...] hate Joyce?

Yes.

Recommendations to help with reading Ulysses or any of Joyce's other poems, short stories and novels?

Don't.

Agreed.
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« Reply #4 on: February 21, 2012, 05:19:15 PM »

No one is literate in English if they haven't read Joyce.

Achronos, do yourself a favor.

Toss those reading helps away. Read the Odyssey (I go more with Lattimore) and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (you are already reading the Bible). And read Joyce chronologically. Start with Portrait.

And read it aloud when it gets tough. Especially, his later works.

Just the reading of it aloud, will help reveal much of what seems "difficult". (Really this is recommended for all reading, since reading silently is rather a recent notion.)

Forget trying to tie down all the allusions. He was probably one the single greatest minds and artists this planet has even seen, you will fail.

Fall in love with him and he will reward you with a lifetime of re-reading.

As a clever guy once said:

Rejoice! Read Joyce!



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« Reply #5 on: February 24, 2012, 04:44:52 AM »

No one is literate in English if they haven't read Joyce.

Achronos, do yourself a favor.

Toss those reading helps away. Read the Odyssey (I go more with Lattimore) and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (you are already reading the Bible). And read Joyce chronologically. Start with Portrait.

And read it aloud when it gets tough. Especially, his later works.

Just the reading of it aloud, will help reveal much of what seems "difficult". (Really this is recommended for all reading, since reading silently is rather a recent notion.)

Forget trying to tie down all the allusions. He was probably one the single greatest minds and artists this planet has even seen, you will fail.

Fall in love with him and he will reward you with a lifetime of re-reading.

As a clever guy once said:

Rejoice! Read Joyce!




A bit of a tangent, but have you read Robert Fagles' translation of Homer? I just bought it, was going to start on it, then my room flooded and I don't know where the workers put it.
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« Reply #6 on: February 24, 2012, 08:14:58 AM »

Thank you orthonorm, just the response I was looking for. If it helps any, read Portrait and Dubliners.
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« Reply #7 on: February 24, 2012, 10:06:44 AM »

I remember enjoying Portrait in high school but I really have to re-read it and get around to the big novels too. On a side note, here's the Clancy Brothers singing "Finnegan's Wake." http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f7yR-U4m_dw
« Last Edit: February 24, 2012, 10:06:53 AM by Iconodule » Logged

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