James Joyce’s Ulysses has an undeserved reputation for being impossibly difficult to read. Having said that, it is demanding and is better done with a guide in the first instance. Bloomsday in Melbourne annually runs a variety of courses on Joyce and is open to requests to customise courses or lectures. On its committee are several people with academic backgrounds who have studied Joyce most of their lives who relish talking about Joyce to groups at all levels of competence. Email Bloomsday for more information. Currently, the organisers are running courses at University of the Third Age, Melbourne City Campus (starting with an intensive introduction to Ulysses on Monday 27 Feb. 2017, 10am – 5pm. Phone U3A to book. You need to be a member).
Coming up in 2017:
1. Introducing Ulysses, an intensive course on the basics of reading Ulysses.
This course is for rank beginners, or those who’ve not got passed chapter 3 (a surprisingly large cohort of folk, so don’t be discouraged!). It covers the basics of the structure of the novel, and why it presents so many stumbling blocks. It is a gentle introduction to its main characters and some user-friendly chapters of the novel. More information…..
Date: 25 March 2017, 12.30pm – 6.30pm. Bar food is available at the Club and afternoon tea will be served.
This course is for more advanced readers of Ulysses and focusses on Joyce’s modernism, his experimentalism and his engagement with challenging ideas. It will deal with the chapters of medium difficulty in the novel. They are those that draw attention to the codes and conventions of writing itself.
Date :To be advised, and depending on need for it. Bar food is available at the Club and afternoon tea will be served.
Since 2010, Bloomsday has run several courses, usually on Ulysses, at different levels. These are not on offer in 2016, but presenters are open to persuasion.
Bloomsday wishes to contest the notion that the novel is too difficult for most readers and is passionately committed to demystifying it. This course introduces readers to the simpler chapters of the novel and its main superb characters, and it gives an overview of the architecture of the novel.
This course tackles the most difficult parts of the novel. It focusses on A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man and the Stephen chapters of Ulysses. It asks questions about Joyce’s implied aesthetics.
Creating multiple Mollies in Yes, Yes, Yes! in 2012