For The Millions, Austin Ratner documents the relationship between the “forgotten” Irish writer James Stephens and the famed James Joyce. Despite starting as literary rivals, Joyce wanted Stephens to finish Finnegans Wake if he ever lost his eyesight. In addition, the essay examines Stephens’s influence on other well-known Irish writers, including Seán O’Casey and Eugene O’Neill....more
Posts Tagged: James Joyce
Lit Hub has been sharing excerpts of classic favorites to help weather the brutal cold—or, well, the mild cold, as is the case here in New York. Cozy up with the quiet desperation and harsh weather of James Joyce’s “The Dead,” Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, or Guy de Maupassant’s “The First Snowfall.”...more
Over at The Toast, Rebecca Turkewitz writes about the intersections between literary geography and the real, from Joyce’s Dublin and Tolkien’s Middle Europe to Faulkner’s Mississippi and Munro’s Ontario—how we explore these places by walking through pages, and how they map to our homes and street corners....more
There’s always Stephen’s classic hangover cure, “The Cabman’s Kickstart.” Simply stare with weary ennui at a stale dinner roll while insulting a cup of coffee.
Over at Melville House, resident Joyce expert and author of An Exaggerated Murder, Josh Cook, is impersonating Ulysses’s hero, Leopold Bloom, and answering your most distressing questions in a new monthly advice column....more
The book was, we can now see, crying out for the invention of the web, which would enable the holding of multiple domains of knowledge in the mind at one time that a proper reading requires.
At the Guardian, Billy Mills looks at the love match that is the Internet and Finnegans Wake and has good tidings: hypertext may make the formerly unreadable novel readable....more
The British Library says it has a window of 15 years to preserve an invaluable cache of sound recordings, but unless fundraising can help pick up the pace, the archives could take as many as 48 to complete. The artifacts represent a range of obsolete formats, some of them long dead; from wax cylinders of Florence Nightingale to open reel recordings of children’s songs, and of course countless classic author interviews and readings....more
To what extent am I reading Ulysses by following Ulysses Reader? What does “reading” even mean at this point, given our near-constant engagement with text?
Why would a writer elicit that kind of hatred? What kind of threat did he pose? I asked my dad if I could borrow a copy of Ulysses, went to my room and began to read. An hour later I came back downstairs.
Writing a novel requires plenty of time, and Irish author Julian Gough is hoping to fund that time with a Kickstarter campaign he has dubbed Litcoin. For small amounts of money, Gough will send contributors postcards stained with whiskey, coffee, lipstick, bullet holes, or, for a mere $500, a postcard written in his blood....more
A deep meditation on whatever it was that plagued James Joyce.
For some, the uncertainty surrounding Joyce’s condition has turned the issue into his most captivating puzzle. Erik Schneider, an independent scholar, became particularly fascinated. Schneider had dropped out of the University of California, Santa Barbara in 1972 and spent years educating himself at the school’s library.
The game is currently in the development and crowdfunding stage, but it already looks pretty interesting, even psychedelic. Its title, In Ulysses: Proteus, comes from the chapter of the novel that it tackles. In it, Dedalus wanders across a desolate beach, closes his eyes, and ponders the shifting nature of reality and the disconnect between his inner self and the external world.
Monday marked Bloomsday, the annual celebration of James Joyce’s 732-page day-in-a-book, Ulysses. While this is hardly short fiction, Joyce is also often credited as one of the earliest practitioners of the epiphany, a technique that still burns bright in short fiction (and at times too bright as some have told it)....more
Sweny’s, the pharmacy made famous in Joyce’s Ulysses (when Leopold Bloom visits the Dublin shop to purchase lotion and soap for his wife Molly), opened more than 167 years ago and has remained more or less unchanged for most of that time....more
Gather round, ye James Joyce devotees: Mark O’Connell has an essay (replete with some pretty nifty info-graphics) up at Salon on the Dublin of the past and present:
Everyone in Dubliners is thinking about a way out, if not actively pursuing one; everyone is dreaming of some better version of himself in some better place.
What happens when the reproduction rights of literary works and an author’s public image are taken out of their owner’s control, but without any law infringement?
Over at the Paris Review, Evan Kindley tries to find out. He compares the case of the upcoming David Foster Wallace movie, adapted from David Lipsky’s memoir Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself, to what happened to James Joyce when Ulysses was reprinted by another author in the U.S., where the book wasn’t under copyright....more
Story is an integral part of the city of Dublin. Bronze statues of beloved writers roam the landscape, immortal: Wilde lounges “languidly on a crag in the park at Merrion Square,” while Joyce is “depicted rather more severely in bronze, leaning on his cane as he strolls down North Earl Street.”
Ever wondered what the tower in the opening scene of Ulysses actually looks like?...more
The first of three parts of a Chinese translation of Finnegans Wake consumed eight years of translator Dai Congrong’s life. The almost unreadable book proves even more difficult to translate because of the many puns and layered meanings, explains MobyLives:
The novel has been deemed “untranslatable” and the translations that are successful tend to be consuming: the Polish version took ten years to finish, the French version thirty years, and the Japanese version took three separate translators after the first disappeared and the second went mad.
The premise of the game “James Joyce or Kool Keith?” is simple: “Can you distinguish between sentences written by the Irish novelist and the lyrics of surrealist rapper Kool Keith?”
In practice, depending on your level of familiarity with each artist’s oeuvre, it might be a bit more complicated....more
For Bookish, music writer and self-described “karaoke ho” Rob Sheffield lists which songs famous authors of the past would have belted out on karaoke night.
He’s unquestionably right about Oscar Wilde crooning something from The Smiths, though it seems a missed opportunity not to have given James Joyce “Baby Got Back.”
Which tunes do you think your favorite writers would have favored?...more
What is the most important thing England’s former colonies have in common? For Saikat Majumdar, an assistant professor at Stanford, the answer is boredom.
In his latest book, Prose of the World, Majumdar explores how writers from Ireland’s James Joyce to India’s Amit Chaudhuri spin the everyday dullness of marginalization into gleaming prose....more