In the Eye of the Beholder

Tim Cavanaugh sums up some of the reactions Ulysses still gets:

Ulysses recently has drawn the fire of literary iconoclasts. “I will say it once and for all, straight out: it all went wrong with James Joyce,” writes the dyspeptic critic Dale Peck, who condemns the book’s “diarrheic flow of words” and applauds himself for having spoken “heresy” against a canonical work. “Ulysses could have done with a good editor,” the acclaimed novelist Roddy Doyle recently told an audience of crestfallen Joyce fans. “You know, people are always putting Ulysses in the top 10 books ever written, but I doubt that any of those people were really moved by it.” Concludes the writer Stefan Sullivan in a recent Washington Times appreciation: “Ulysses is a pretty awful novel.”

One critic even calls it a ‘giant fart joke,’ which made me feel somewhat better for having never managed to finish the tome. I’ve always been slow in ‘getting’ fart jokes.

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One Response to “In the Eye of the Beholder”

  1. A Web Undone 2 Says:

    The English Literary Tradition: Fart Jokes

    MoorishGirl One critic even calls it [Joyce’s Ulysses] a ‘giant fart joke,’ which made me feel somewhat better for having never managed to finish the tome. I’ve always been slow in ‘getting’ fart jokes. Then again, fart jokes have a…

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