Belated Bloomsday: A Beginner’s Guide to ULYSSES

Cassandra Neace

Staff Writer

Cassandra Neace is a high school English teacher in Houston. When she's not in the classroom, she reads books and writes about them. She prides herself on her ability to recommend a book for most any occasion. She can be found on Instagram @read_write_make

James Joyce’s Ulysses is one of those books that I really, really want to read, but I open it up and then promptly throw it down and start screaming like a little girl because INTIMIDATING. But it shouldn’t be. In honor of Bloomsday, in an attempt to make myself a little less afraid and little more enthusiastic, I spent last Sunday acclimating myself to the world of Ulysses via video.

First, Stephen Fry tells us why he loves Ulysses and provides a handy synopsis.


Now, we’ll hear from the author himself. He was recorded reading from the Aeolus episode in 1924.


This documentary explores the novel and its author in depth. It’s pretty interesting, too. 


And if you’re really feeling gung-ho, here’s the full-length film from 1967.  It even received an Academy Award nomination for the screenplay. 


If you’re not feeling so gung-ho, then just check out Molly Bloom’s famous soliloquy. 


If you’re more a listener than a watcher, you might check out Frank Delaney’s Re:Joyce Podcast.

Bloomsday, then, is a day when people remember this great work of Joyce, read his novel that takes place in a day, and do something to recreate the world of Leopold and Molly Bloom.

Take a look at how Dubliners celebrate the day:


When Bloomsday rolls around next year, and you’re in Houston, TX, then I recommend following the plan set forth by Jack Highberger at Jack Around

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