Help me out /lit/, please.
I am a STEM student from a country that has no connection to English literature, but I want to understand and enjoy the greatest works of the English canon to the fullest. The one I'm more hyped to read is Ulysses, because everyone says it is incredibly great and I loved the Iliad and the Odyssey. Even though I'm in STEM for a carreer path it is from literature that I take the most pleasure in my life and to literature that I owe the molding of my character. I would go through great effort to understand a book like Ulysses.
I have read Dubliners and travelled to Ireland for two weeks (if that helps), and enjoyed it, even though I don't get what the rave about it is (maybe because I'm not Euro). I also have read the plays from Wilde and Dorian Gray.
The question I'm getting to is this one: Since I will not be able to attend to classes about Ulysses (because of where I am), how would I go about certifying that I am completely ready to understand it and enjoy it to it's fullest? And where would I go to learn and understand more about Ulysses after I read it? Thank you.
Already have, I'm also through the process of going through almost the entire western philosophy canon, but I can attend to classes about those and /lit/ already has loads of detailed guides with links to lectures.
Well, you already read the illiad and the odyssey.
That said, there is a lot of nitty gritty and wordplay and just straight up irish stuff. But i'm pretty sure most of this will be explained in the companion book.
Oh and also the color schemes and shit, and i'm guessing icarus would be relevant too
It's just English words on a paper.
Joyce was not an alien, his stuff is tough to digest but if you have the required background and read carefully.
The more books you read, the better you'll understand Joyce. He was extremely well-versed and had read nearly all the classics by the time he wrote Ulysses, meaning he had a lot of material to reference from. Besides, one of the reasons he's praised is because he deconstructed a lot of literary tropes and conventions, and you'll only be able to appreciate that if you've read enough to start to recognize the recurring formalities and habits.
But don't worry about that for now, you'll have plenty of time to re-read Ulysses later; I'm assuming you're going to do that, if you are as fascinated by good literature as you claim. Just pick it up when you feel like reading it and have fun.
The book is so full of references that no one will ever understand all of it in one reading. If you are going to read The Odyssey then why not Hamlet, why not a million other things that help make up the book up? You have to read the book at some point, it's impossible to be completely prepared for it.
This. OP will have a much better time if he accepts that while some background readibgs will help, he will never get every single allusion, reference, or metaphor, and that he can just read the book for his own enjoyment and take in the beauty of joyce's prose without putting so much pressure on himself to "get it"
You should know there-Socratics, Ulysses, and Shakespeare's Troilus & Cressida....
I'm not very knowledgeable about Joyce. I could speculate, but I wouldn't be walking on solid ground there.
I'm a little ignorant in this regard; what do Bloom and Stephen talk about before the catechism chapter?