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1st Chapter of Ulysses

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Zagros View Drop Down
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Kaveh ye Ahangar

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    Posted: 02 Apr 2010 at 00:33
Would someone care to explain it to me?  Beyond the first part in the turret and then when Stephen is teaching his class and then goes to meet his uncle, I am at a complete and utter loss, but I think that is partly due to the structure and style, often times I can't tell whether it is conversation, a thought or narrative.

I have had this book for three years and never read past 20 pages because of the fear generated by its reputation.  However, having taken this whole week off with my initial plans scuppered by the weather, its allure started to loom large on my mind and bookshelf on Tuesday and I bit the bullet and finally read the first chapter on Wednesday and have been trying to make sense of it before reading on. 

I am talking about James Joyce's Ulysses btw.  This book by the way has 200,000 words and over 40,000 of those are different.  So I do accompany my reading with a dictionary which has failed me on occasion.  And that's just in the first chapter.




Edited by Zagros - 02 Apr 2010 at 00:34
"There was glory in pissing, Corabb decided as he watched the stream curve out and make that familiar but unique sound as it hit the ground." So true.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dolphin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Apr 2010 at 00:47
If this makes you feel any better, there is an English option in final Year called 'Ulysses in Contexts', it runs for the entire year and deals almost exclusively with that one book.

Let's not even bother with Finnegan's Wake....
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Apr 2010 at 01:40
How about a one sentence summation: The tediousness of daily life presented as heroic adventure!
 
As for having trouble with chapter one (or for that matter the following two chapters), well what is one to do? Dublin is boring specially after a Parisian interlude.
Honi soit qui mal y pense
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Kaveh ye Ahangar

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Zagros Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Apr 2010 at 04:58
I would have to disagree with that summation.  The context of the book itself is no mystery to me.  It took 14 years to write, it offended the English who had it censored and its overall undertone was that quite to the contrary of the stereotype, the Irish weren't a bunch of drunken philistines (at least some of them!). In fact I think we have our very own Dedalus (Dolphin) and Mulligan (Parnell) who are a living testimony to Joyce's point on this very forum, a rare breed, a rare breed indeed. 

My problem is understanding it from line to line, paragraph to paragraph and page to page (and likely  chapter to chapter).

having said that I do have a lot of vivid if incoherent scenes in my head from reading that first chapter and I feel overcome a little by his writing style and feel a subconscious effort to mimic it...  I am going to have a crack at chapter two tonight.

Quote If this makes you feel any better, there is an English option in final Year called 'Ulysses in Contexts', it runs for the entire year and deals almost exclusively with that one book.

Let's not even bother with Finnegan's Wake....


Believe it or not, that's made me feel a hell of a lot better, lol.  And speaking of Finnegan's Wake(!), it has its place beside Ulysses on my modest bookshelf and its been there just as long (and funnily enough also remains unread).
"There was glory in pissing, Corabb decided as he watched the stream curve out and make that familiar but unique sound as it hit the ground." So true.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Apr 2010 at 08:48
Perhaps these little web sites might help:
 
 
 
Anyway take it to heart and when in thirst hit the nearest pub a la Bloom--
 
Preparatory to anything else Mr Bloom brushed off the greater bulk of the shavings and handed Stephen the hat and ashplant and bucked him up generally in orthodox Samaritan fashion which he very badly needed. His (Stephen's) mind was not exactly what you would call wandering but a bit unsteady and on his expressed desire for some beverage to drink Mr Bloom in view of the hour it was and there being no pump of Vartry water available for their ablutions let alone drinking purposes hit upon an expedient by suggesting, off the reel, the propriety of the cabman's shelter, as it was called, hardly a stonesthrow away near Butt bridge where they might hit upon some drinkables in the shape of a milk and soda or a mineral. But how to get there was the rub.
 
Ulysses...opening of chapter 3.


Edited by drgonzaga - 02 Apr 2010 at 08:49
Honi soit qui mal y pense
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Zagros View Drop Down
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Kaveh ye Ahangar

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Zagros Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Apr 2010 at 21:02
Great, will check in with those links before I read any further.
"There was glory in pissing, Corabb decided as he watched the stream curve out and make that familiar but unique sound as it hit the ground." So true.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Mar 2012 at 19:14
Sounds great!I agree with you.


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