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In a message dated 3/10/01 10:06:40 PM Eastern Standard Time, 
[log in to unmask] writes:


>    --The boast-rephrased-as-a-confession: "Although I've made it
>    through all his other works, I just can't seem to get much beyond the
>    first two-thirds of Joyce's 'Finnegan's Wake' without getting bogged
>    down."
> 
> 

I'd be careful with this one if you're assuming nobody ever really reads 
Finnegans Wake. Had a class my first year in art school where we read all 
through it and talked about it.  It was really interesting. Had a good 
teacher though, which helped a lot. Maybe he was trying to prove to himself 
that young students could do this if they didn't get their minds cluttered up 
with a lot of negative propaganda about how difficult and boring it was all 
supposed to be. He was probably right, because I think for young kids today, 
Joyce probably doesn't seem any more difficult to read than Becket, and they 
don't seem to find Beckett all that difficult. Also, what Joyce is  doing in 
FW isn't so different from what Eliot is doing in TWL: taking some basic 
myths and building a fantastic, absurdist, bawdy-ridiculous  superstructure 
on top of them. All us little RISD freshmen certainly didn't become Joyce 
scholars from a one-semester  exposure, and I don't remember a lot of FW 
today, as this is many many years later. But I do (blush) remember that when 
Finnegan dies, his erect penis becomes the monument in Phoenix Park. It just 
seemed a great little Joycean embellishment for the basic myth of the god or 
giant who dies and the earth is made out of his corpse.

If you want a book that's maybe got a stronger reputation than FW for being 
difficult to follow, try Bertrand Russell and Alfred North Whitehead's 
Principia Mathematica...though Eliot might have read through it.  

pat



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<HTML><FONT FACE=arial,helvetica><FONT  SIZE=3 FAMILY="SANSSERIF" FACE="Arial Narrow" LANG="0"><B>In a message dated 3/10/01 10:06:40 PM Eastern Standard Time, 
<BR>[log in to unmask] writes:
<BR>
<BR></FONT><FONT  COLOR="#000000" SIZE=2 FAMILY="SANSSERIF" FACE="Arial" LANG="0"></B>
<BR><BLOCKQUOTE TYPE=CITE style="BORDER-LEFT: #0000ff 2px solid; MARGIN-LEFT: 5px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 5px"> &nbsp;&nbsp;--The boast-rephrased-as-a-confession: "Although I've made it
<BR> &nbsp;&nbsp;through all his other works, I just can't seem to get much beyond the
<BR> &nbsp;&nbsp;first two-thirds of Joyce's 'Finnegan's Wake' without getting bogged
<BR> &nbsp;&nbsp;down."
<BR>
<BR></FONT><FONT  COLOR="#000000" SIZE=3 FAMILY="SANSSERIF" FACE="Arial" LANG="0"></BLOCKQUOTE>
<BR></FONT><FONT  COLOR="#000000" SIZE=3 FAMILY="SANSSERIF" FACE="Arial Narrow" LANG="0"><B>
<BR>I'd be careful with this one if you're assuming nobody ever really reads 
<BR>Finnegans Wake. Had a class my first year in art school where we read all 
<BR>through it and talked about it. &nbsp;It was really interesting. Had a good 
<BR>teacher though, which helped a lot. Maybe he was trying to prove to himself 
<BR>that young students could do this if they didn't get their minds cluttered up 
<BR>with a lot of negative propaganda about how difficult and boring it was all 
<BR>supposed to be. He was probably right, because I think for young kids today, 
<BR>Joyce probably doesn't seem any more difficult to read than Becket, and they 
<BR>don't seem to find Beckett all that difficult. Also, what Joyce is &nbsp;doing in 
<BR>FW isn't so different from what Eliot is doing in TWL: taking some basic 
<BR>myths and building a fantastic, absurdist, bawdy-ridiculous &nbsp;superstructure 
<BR>on top of them. All us little RISD freshmen certainly didn't become Joyce 
<BR>scholars from a one-semester &nbsp;exposure, and I don't remember a lot of FW 
<BR>today, as this is many many years later. But I do (blush) remember that when 
<BR>Finnegan dies, his erect penis becomes the monument in Phoenix Park. It just 
<BR>seemed a great little Joycean embellishment for the basic myth of the god or 
<BR>giant who dies and the earth is made out of his corpse.
<BR>
<BR>If you want a book that's maybe got a stronger reputation than FW for being 
<BR>difficult to follow, try Bertrand Russell and Alfred North Whitehead's 
<BR>Principia Mathematica...though Eliot might have read through it. &nbsp;
<BR>
<BR>pat
<BR>
<BR></B></FONT></HTML>

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