Writings about Macs, music and more by Kirk McElhearn

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James Joyce

App Review: James Joyce’s Ulysses, A Guide

06/16/2014

What better way to celebrate Bloomsday – June 16, the day on which James Joyce’s Ulysses is set – than by discovering the novel in an interactive iPad app? Naxos, known for its classical music releases and audiobooks, has released the $9 Joyce’s Ulysses: A Guide which gives you Joyce’s great novel, plus a plethora […]

Happy Bloomsday to All!

06/16/2014

Once again it’s Bloomsday, the 16th of June, the day on which James Joyce’s Ulysses takes place. If you aren’t familiar with this great work of the early twentieth century, it tells the tale of a modern-day Ulysses (Leopold Bloom) as he wanders the streets of Dublin on June 16, 1904. Closely modeled on the Odyssey, Ulysses is a landmark in modernist literature.

Every year on this day, around the world, people read Ulysses alone or in groups, to themselves or out loud, in performance or simply in sitting on a couch. For this year’s Bloomsday, allow me to recommend a novel way to experience the book. The recently released unabridged audiobook of Ulysses, from Naxos, is a gem. With musical interludes and sound effects, and excellent reading by Jim Norton (and Marcella Riordan for the final chapter, the soliloquy by Molly Bloom), this reading brings the work to life in unexpected ways. At over 27 hours, you won’t be able to listen to the entire book in one day (the novel takes place over a period of “only” 18 hours), but you’ll be drawn into the story in ways you did not expect.

Ulysses Gets Censored Again; This Time by Apple

06/07/2010

Apple’s strategy of censoring apps that contains content unsuitable for children is certainly defensible, but sometimes the results are ludicrous. A comic adaptation of James Joyce’s Ulysses was denied approval until the developer and artist made some changes, notably reframing the image below: Come on, Apple, even the famous court decision overturning its censorship in […]

Happy Birthday Finnegans Wake

05/04/2010

On this day in 1939, James Joyce’s final book, Finnegans Wake, was published. A dense, complex book, that more people have started than finished, Finnegans Wake is a novel of the “night,” as Joyce said, full of dream language that, well, is hard to follow. You need to be armed with patience, dictionaries, and books […]