Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Ulysses=Day : Finnegan's Wake=Night. Must one start with day?

  1. #1
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Posts
    3

    Ulysses=Day : Finnegan's Wake=Night. Must one start with day?

    Hello.

    I find Finnegans Wake much more to my liking then Ulysses personally. However, I once read that JJ stated that he expected his readers to pretty much dedicate their lives to his works as if they were religious canon...which they kind of are. Finnegans Wake IS MY BIBLE, or I have been reading it as such anyway. In any case since Ulysses is considered Day, is it absolutely necessary to start with Ulysses? Or is it just fine to read only one work of JJ...for me that is Finnegans Wake? It's well known that Finnegans Wake is connected to Ulysses and all of his other works. That they are all connected in fact, that one must read all of his works in order to understand what is truly going on within all his works. So must one read everything of JJ or is reading just Finnegans Wake OK or would James Joyce consider it wrong for me to read only one of his books?

    Thank you :-)
    Last edited by Nebnos; 06-27-2015 at 03:31 PM.

  2. #2
    Registered User mona amon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    India
    Posts
    1,500
    I've only read A portrait, some short stories and Ulysses. I love Ulysses so I highly recommend it, but it's such a hilariously funny, irreverent, blasphemous book that I cannot understand the almost religious reverence with which Joyce's work is so often approached.
    Exit, pursued by a bear.

  3. #3
    Maybe YesNo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Near Chicago, Illinois USA
    Posts
    8,445
    Blog Entries
    2
    I couldn't make sense out of Finnegans Wake. If someone could translate the first two pages maybe I might understand at least that much.

    I was able to read the first part of Ulysses (about 50 pages). After that it didn't make enough sense to continue. I did enjoy the first part.

    So, why is Finnegans Wake so good?

  4. #4
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Posts
    3
    YesNo : I came here for guidance as well on Finnegans Wake. I'm looking for Joycean scholars on here to help me out. I have read about half of Book One so far. I could translate the first two pages for you, but it would take an entire essay and even then its only my interpretation of what the words and sentences amount too. Then if I read the same book years from now I would get something completely different out of it and probably have to write a new essay on the first two pages. Its true genius. Why is it so good? Because within it is an entire universe, that's my brief answer to you.

    mona amon : Well, I really just meant I consider it kind of like a bible just because I like it a lot better then the bible being an atheist myself. Just in the same way of some religious parody religions, I consider Finnegans Wake almost a parody religious Bible. Even though it contains every religion within it. I have read passages in it from the bible and from the Koran so far and I'm sure it has parts of every religious text within it. Of course he uses his own strange dream language of the passages from these religious texts. Truth is I consider Finnegan Wake as highly funny, comical, irreverent and blasphemous as well. I guess I just meant Finnegan Wake is so great to me that it almost approaches a spiritual, godly quality or since I'm an atheist maybe one could use the term astronomical, royal astronomy. For example whenever I watch some of the films of Stanley Kubrick, especially 2001 : A Space Odyssey I find myself feeling an almost spiritual ascendency , despite being atheist great art like Finnegans Wake as well almost feels like god is within it, even though I don't believe in any god. I don't know if I'm making any sense and I don't really know how to put it into words. Sorry. If a theist were to read Finnegans Wake they might see it as having God within it. I believe the Christian Science Monitor would write a great review of Finnegans Wake claiming it as highly spiritual and religious, I believe they wrote a review of 2001 : A Space Odyssey that was quite interesting and mentioned something of having god within it, as it being highly spiritual. Sorry if I don't make any sense, its hard to put into words, as an atheist, how I consider Finnegans Wake as a kind of Bible to me. I hope I came close to what I meant at least.
    Last edited by Nebnos; 06-27-2015 at 03:42 PM.

  5. #5
    Maybe YesNo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Near Chicago, Illinois USA
    Posts
    8,445
    Blog Entries
    2
    Quote Originally Posted by Nebnos View Post
    YesNo : I came here for guidance as well on Finnegans Wake. I'm looking for Joycean scholars on here to help me out. I have read about half of Book One so far. I could translate the first two pages for you, but it would take an entire essay and even then its only my interpretation of what the words and sentences amount too. Then if I read the same book years from now I would get something completely different out of it and probably have to write a new essay on the first two pages. Its true genius. Why is it so good? Because within it is an entire universe, that's my brief answer to you.
    I am amazed you got that far. It makes me wonder that we are talking about the same book.

    The idea that there is "an entire universe" within Finnegans Wake reminds me of something similar said about Tarot cards. Maybe there is an entire universe within both of them.
    Last edited by YesNo; 06-28-2015 at 04:49 PM.

  6. #6
    Registered User mona amon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    India
    Posts
    1,500
    Nebnos, I actually understood you pretty well the first time. Sometimes we encounter a book that has such an earth-shaking effect on us it is like a religious experience. I can empathize with that, and for me Ulysses was such a book, so I think I understand how you feel about FW. I was the one who didn't explain myself properly. There are certain readers who seem to approach Ulysses with such serious and fearful reverence that it is really funny, and when you mentioned 'religious', 'Bible' etc it set off an association of ideas, but I was thinking of such readers and not you.

    Welcome to the Forum, by the way!
    Exit, pursued by a bear.

  7. #7
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Posts
    3
    Thanks for the warm welcome to the forum mona amon. You and me are on the same page in regards to James Joyce and the great works of literature. This is actually my first contact with people interested in Joyce, so I have yet to speak to any Joycean scholars and interested parties like yourself yet. Is it really true what you say about some of them taking his stuff TOO seriously ? Because I mean come on, Ulysses contains fart jokes in it, lol. I can't wait to meet the people your talking about.

    YesNo : A great place to start is the film 'Waking Life' directed by Richard Linklater. Its easy to make the connection for anyone who has seen Waking Life and read Finnegans Wake, yet I still have yet to come across anyone mentioning the relationship between the two anywhere. Anyway I consider 'Waking Life' the closest a film has EVER come to the book Finnegans Wake. The film is quite intellectual and confusing, but not as confusing as Finnegans Wake, which is why I suggest it to readers of FW, especially beginners. It has the same disjointed nature as Finnegan Wake, while still remaining a cohesive whole. The film will give you a unique perspective of Finnegans Wake and vice versa. Since I'm starting to understand FW really well now, I almost want to write a book on it. A book about the thoughts I get while reading it, how it relates to my life, its relationship to all of human history and the cosmos.

    So Richard Linklater's film 'Waking Life' is a MUST watch film of readers of Finnegans Wake. It's a film I think should be watched by everyone in fact, because it is a GREAT cinematic work of art.

    I once heard a woman read Finnegans Wake in such a perfect way that I think Finnegans Wake should be read on a constant loop in a museum using her voice. After all Finnegans Wake is an endless loop, a constant reoccurring dream of the main character, never ending. Wow, the more I think of Waking Life and Finnegans Wake the more I see the connections. I'm sure the director never intended any such connection, nevertheless there still is a connection between that film and FW. I will try to find the woman who read Finnegan Wake so beautifully, poetically and flawlessly. The way she read it made the passages she read make sense instantly. James Joyce stated Finnegans Wake was meant to be heard, not read, which becomes apparent when you hear anyone read it, most especially this woman I speak of. So I will try to track this woman's reading of passages of FW for you to show you why its intended to be heard. After hearing her read it I realized James Joyce was right, the book does make A LOT more sense hearing it as opposed to reading it. This is why I read the book out loud to myself, useful trick YesNo when reading the book.

    I actually collect tarot cards myself, funny you mentioned them. I am not spiritual or religious in any way, just for some reason I like to collect them, I have no idea why, lol. Anyway I agree that tarot cards are entire universes unto themselves. The symbology of tarot cards are infinite. Like FW an entire universe is contained within the major and minor arcana. For example if I wish to write a short story and I am stuck. All I have to do is lay out one of my tarot decks in any of the hundreds of tarot card layouts, and before me gives me an idea for a story, it gives me that spark I need for a short story.
    Last edited by Nebnos; 07-02-2015 at 04:30 AM. Reason: some additions

  8. #8
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Posts
    1
    I once heard a woman read Finnegans Wake in such a perfect way that I think Finnegans Wake should be read on a constant loop in a museum using her voice. After all Finnegans Wake is an endless loop, a constant reoccurring dream of the main character, never ending. Wow, the more I think of Waking Life and Finnegans Wake the more I see the connections. I'm sure the director never intended any such connection, nevertheless there still is a connection between that film and FW. I will try to find the woman who read Finnegan Wake so beautifully, poetically and flawlessly. The way she read it made the passages she read make sense instantly. James Joyce stated Finnegans Wake was meant to be heard, not read, which becomes apparent when you hear anyone read it, most especially this woman I speak of. So I will try to track this woman's reading of passages of FW for you to show you why its intended to be heard. After hearing her read it I realized James Joyce was right, the book does make A LOT more sense hearing it as opposed to reading it. This is why I read the book out loud to myself, useful trick YesNo when reading the book.

    I have just joined this group after coming across this interesting discussion thread.

    The reason I joined is to express my agreement with the idea that FW works better when it is read aloud. Whenever I read it I try to read it aloud to myself as much as is practicable. There is a lyrical, almost musical quality to it that is quite appealing to me, and which is perfectly demonstrated by the recording of Joyce reading the Anna Livia Plurabelle excerpt (available on YouTube, etc). To my mind the work seems to go from the sub-atomic level to the cosmic, and yet in a way nothing really happens or the same stuff keeps happening. I have read it multiple times, but have never been able to make it all the way through without some sort of guide book such as Tindall's Reader's Guide, McHugh's Annotations and/or Campbell and Robinson's Skeleton Key.

    Both Ulysses and FW are complete masterpieces, and I love them both but in different ways. In my own mind I think of Ulysses as the greatest novel ever written, and FW as the most astonishing work of art based (more or less) on the English language. That is why James Joyce is my favorite writer after Shakespeare (and no one else even comes close!)

Similar Threads

  1. Finnegan's Wake online annotated edition
    By Mr.lucifer in forum General Literature
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 08-19-2012, 06:53 PM
  2. I want to start reading Nietzsche. Where should I start?
    By spookymulder93 in forum General Literature
    Replies: 18
    Last Post: 07-11-2010, 04:29 AM
  3. the best supplementary book on finnegan's wake?
    By waryan in forum Joyce, James
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 05-31-2010, 03:20 PM
  4. Finnegan's Wake--Unquenchable Thirst
    By easyeverett in forum Personal Poetry
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 02-17-2009, 01:18 PM
  5. Wake
    By toni in forum Personal Poetry
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 04-10-2007, 02:21 AM

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •