I've always enjoyed "The Dubliners" but could never plough through the rest of Joyce. But then I'm a simple man with a simple, profane mind.
I've always loved the idea of James Joyce. It's the reality of his work that bored me. I have started Dubliners, Ulysees, and Portrait, and never finished a single one. If I could just find time to not read Finnegan's Wake I'll be completely unread in JJ. And I call myself an Elitist. Ha.
Well, how elite can a normal guy really be?
That's exactly my problem.
Or how normal can an elite guy be?
Joyce, like Shakespeare, believed he was writing for a broad-based audience, for common consumption. In Ulysses he bent over backwards to make the Bloom/Stephen pair the broadest possible illustration of (Joyce as) the everyman. Joyce was sure of his own genius, but he found glory in the every aspect of experience. (The Wake proved that he really was his own best audience but did give the rest of the universe many lifetimes of challenge for discovery and comprehension of that genius.)The biggest problem many folks have with Joyce's work is the (unfounded) reputation that the whole of it is incomprehensible and esoteric, the stuff of pointless university scholarship, when in fact most of his work is sparkling exaltation of our common humanity.Tastes vary of course.
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