Ulysses, by James Joyce

Length: 3 Pages 656 Words

Initial reactions to the novel Ulysses, by James Joyce were that this book parallels itself with Homer’s Odyssey. I initially thought that the idea of a “day in the life of” book would be interesting to read as well. In almost every novel you are able to get inside the head of the main characters and are able to feel their emotions at the moments they are feeling them and are able to experience what they experience but very rarely does a novel take you through every aspect of a human beings day and initially that is what I though this novel would be about. Statements that intrigued me from the novel were, “A man of genius makes no mistakes. His errors are volitional and are the portals of discovery.” I liked this quote because it is very true to life. Everyone makes mistakes, but it is these mistakes, which we learn from, and what enable us to grow into the people we are. What attracted me to this novel was that it all took place in the course of one Continue...

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I was fascinated by the almost "a day in the life of type novel which I hadn't read anything of that type in ages. At first, Penelope does not recognize her husband but is convinced only after Odysseus describes their bed. His full name does not even appear in the newspaper report. I was intrigued by the opportunity to read and be able to feel and experience every aspect of a human beings day. There was no room for him at his office, and at one point during the day he is even struck by an opening door. Bloom is a thoroughly whole man, the negatives of his life out weigh the positives like so many of us but he is no saint and for that we cannot have too much sympathy for him, just like any other typical human being. Stephen Dedalus is Telemachus, Ithaca is the Blooms' house, Molly Bloom is a mixture of both Penelope and Calypso, and Ulysses is Odysseus. Striking details in this novel are how James Joyce's characters are so eerily similar to Homer's characters. In the Odyssey, Telemachus decides to leave Ithaca and to search for his father, Odysseus, so that he and Telemachus might return home and will be able to drive away the suitors who are desecrating Ithaca while courting Penelope, Odysseus' wife. Homer's epic almost seemed to be the model or structure that Joyce used to create Ulysses. For Leopold Bloom was a Jewish man who was very shut off from his Catholic and often anti-Semitic associates. He really did not have anything else in common with his colleagues either. However that is all I could get out of Bloom.


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