A Conversation for 'Ulysses' by James Joyce

Ulysses, my literary Everest

Post 1

Basil Fawlty's Moustache

I have tried and tried and tried to read Ulysses and understand ALL of it. I got myself to a point (after about the third reading) where I think I could convince myself that I comprehended well about half of it, and had a general idea what the remaining half was about. After reading this entry I think my general understanding and overall comprehension of the book and the themes behind the book have increased ten-fold. This is less a testament to my mental athleticism than it is to the author(s) of this entry. Never before have I seen a work of such magnitude and complexity so beautifully and eloquently summed up in one concise, clear paragraph as in the opening to this entry. Well done, and thank you. BFM.

Ulysses, my literary Everest

Post 2


Thank you for your kind words. Ulysses presents for every reader an entirely new set of problems. In aiming to speak to each individual reader as a part of a Jungian collective conscience (though doubtless Joyce would have spurned such phraseology) the task of "summing up" Ulysses becomes inestimably complex. Ulysses says entirely different things to every reader. It took me three readings of the book (one of which was page by page analysis) to write that article, which grew out of an undergraduate essay I wrote in my first year at Oxford. If you have any questions, I would value the opportunity to exchange ideas and interpretations with.
Also if you would like to read some of my other work on h2g2.com I wrote an article on T.S. Eliot's Four Quartets, another work I find rich in detail and equally burdensome in terms of interpretation.

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