big reads series #1: ulysses
Some books’ sheer size can make them seem daunting. The Big Reads project, hosted by N Quentin Woolf and James Mansfield, is a year-long group reading designed to help a new audience discover some of literature’s weightier classics, using the net and spoken word to turn them into a shared experience as well as a personal one. The journey is strictly non-academic, and in a spirit of exploration.
The Big Reads readers take one massive book at a time, catching up with each other at monthly intervals to discuss, digest and speculate. The fruits of this endeavor are recorded as a live discussion, available on iTunes and on this site in podcast form, with the opportunity for anyone anywhere to contribute by a social media. They will draw on contemporaneous and up-to-date critiques, and talk to experts in the field. At the end of the project, the readers might just know a little more about the book in question, or may have more questions than answers.
Contributions of all sorts are welcome whether from novices or veterans. Listen in, read along, or help to shape the debate.
See below for ways you can get involved (chief among them: get reading!) If you’d like to be on the Big Reads project mailing list please email and we’ll keep you up-to-date.
Copies of Ulysses can be bought from our partner the Brick Lane Book Shop
Telephone number: 020 7247 0216
The standard text that we’ll be using is (so we have common page numbers)
Ulysses: The 1922 text (Oxford World’s Classics)
Paperback: 1056 pages
Publisher: Oxford Paperbacks (17 April 2008)
Price 8.99 RRP
– it’s not the end of the world if you have a different edition, as long as you’re prepared to be permanently confused about which page is under discussion.
Satirist and writer
Writer and jazz radio broadcaster
Director of Museum of Imaginative Knowledge
winner, Costa Short Story Award
Captain (US Army) and novelist
WHAT WE’VE BEEN READING…
Chapter 1, Telemachus; Chapter 2, Nestor; Chapter 3, Proteus
Chapter 4, Calypso; Chapter 5, Lotus Eaters
Chapter 6, Hades; Chapter 7, Aeolus
Chapter 8, Lestrygonians; Chapter 9, Scylla and Charybdis
Chapter 10, Wandering Rocks; Chapter 11, Sirens
Chapter 12, Cyclops; Chapter 13, Nausicaa; Chapter 14, Oxen of the Sun
Chapter 15: Circe
Chapter 16 and 17: Eumaeus, Ithaca
Chapter 18: Penelope
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