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Read Sirens

In the bar of the Ormond Hotel the two “sirens,” Miss Mina Kennedy and Miss Lydia Douce, barmaids, ply their trade on the afternoon crowd. Simon Dedalus, Lenehan, Ben Dollard, George Lidwell, Brian Kernan, and Father Cowley all enter at intervals. Lenehan is there to meet Blazes Boylan (who will as a result be late for his appointment with Molly). Bloom meets Richie Goulding and they enter to have a meal together. Simon and Ben take turns singing at the newly-tuned piano as Father Cowley plays sentimental Irish tunes. Bloom decides to write back to Martha on the stationery he bought en route to the hotel, diverting Richie’s attention by claiming to be answering an ad. Boylan enters, has a drink with Lenehan, and then leaves with him. Bloom leaves soon after, while the singing continues. He stops outside and farts loudly as a tramcar passes, reading the while Robert Emmet’s last words from a portrait in an antique shop window.

Stylistically, “Sirens” abruptly pulls the rug out from under our feet as it takes the aspiration of literature to the condition of music to a further extreme than had yet been done. The chapter begins with a symphonic overture that introduces many of the leitmotifs and phrases that will be developed further in the remainder. The rest of the chapter employs techniques of musical composition, and relies heavily upon onomatopoeia for its aural effects.

Read “Sirens” now.

Hans Walter Gabler: “The Segments and the Whole: An Aspect of Joyce’s Art of Construction”

The MVP is thrilled to present the next installment of the YoU Lecture Series: Hans Walter Gabler on “The Segments and the Whole: An Aspect of Joyce’s Art of Construction.”

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Interfacing Modernism

My name is Daniel Carter, and I’m a PhD student in Information Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. I’m currently working with Dr. Tanya Clement on the Modernist Versions Project and wanted to write a quick introduction to the work we’re doing for the MVP.

My role in the MVP is currently to think about the design of tools used for collation and of the interfaces that are used to display versioned texts. My background is in Modernist literature (MA from The Ohio State University) and web development and design—so this is work that’s more than a little in line with my interests.

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Jeffrey Drouin to Moderate Eighth YoU Twitter Chat

On Friday, November 16th at 1 pm EST / 10 am PST, Jeffrey Drouin will moderate the MVP’s eighth YoU Twitter chat, focusing specifically on “Wandering Rocks.” The hashtag for the Twitter chat is #yearofulysses.

Jeffrey Drouin is an Assistant Professor of English and Associate Director of the Modernist Journals Project at The University of Tulsa. He is the author of James Joyce, Science, and Modernist Print Culture: “The Einstein of English Fiction, forthcoming with Routledge in 2013. His digital humanities work includes text visualization in periodical culture and Marcel Proust’s À la recherche du temps perdu.

email: jeffrey-drouin@utulsa.edu | twitter: @jdrouin

Read Wandering Rocks

Something of an interlude, this chapter follows Father Conmee and the Vice-Regal cavalcade as they make their distinct ways across Dublin. Their paths never cross, and each of the 19 short sections details from a distanced perspective their interactions with a wide cross-section of the Dublin populace. In terms of style, “Wandering Rocks” adopts an unsettling departure from the previous chapters. It presents objective, external, naturalist descriptions, bereft of stream of consciousness and interior monologue. In this, it represents the path-not-taken by Joyce in the rest of the novel, just as Odysseus chooses not to go by way of the Wandering Rocks in Homer’s Odyssey. First timers, see how many of the characters from other sections you recognize here.

Read “Wandering Rocks” now.