1. Lemex

    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    Finnegan's Wake

    Discussion in 'Book Discussion' started by Lemex, Sep 9, 2014.

    Now, I like James Joyce's writing, I like it a lot. But his last project, Finnegan's Wake is the only work of his that I can honestly say I don't like.

    Why don't I like it? Well, I don't understand it! At all. I can never work out what is even going on. The words, too, seem to have this way of rubbing against my mind, and then moving on without entering, and I can never seem to take anything in.

    Here is the book online:

    http://www.trentu.ca/faculty/jjoyce/fw-3.htm

    Am I an idiot? I just do not understand this at all.

    What is everyone else's experience with this book?
     
  2. peachalulu

    peachalulu Member Reviewer Contributor

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    I'll read it tonight and let you know...lol.
    I did buy a guide to Finnegan's Wake, I'll check that out maybe it offers some insight.
     
  3. thirdwind

    thirdwind Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    Finnegan's Wake is the literary equivalent of a Jackson Pollock painting, though it's far easier to understand what's going on in a Pollock painting.
     
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  4. KaTrian

    KaTrian A foolish little beast. Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Never got around to finish it... Or to make it past the few first pages. It's mind boggling, and I just had to give up as it felt like a waste of time. :oops:
     
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  5. Lemex

    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    No shame in that, I honestly do not think it is worth the effort. Unlike Ulysses it doesn't have an entryway, there is no key to the lock of The Wake.
     
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  6. daemon

    daemon Contributor Contributor

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    bababadalgharaghtakamminarronnkonnbronntonnerronntuonnthunntrovarrhounawnskawntoohoohoordenenthurnuk!
     
  7. peachalulu

    peachalulu Member Reviewer Contributor

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    I went through my guide to Finnegan's Wake - it's not all that illuminating but it does explain what the story is about. I tried reading some of it with that in mind and it helped but still... I was lost. But just when a passage got interesting and the language was lovely and wild, he'd heap on more and more puns. It was the worse kind of stream of conscious. Nabokov hated this book ( though he liked Ulysses ) and called it Pun(n?)igans Wake. Pretty apt title.
     
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  8. Lemex

    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    According to people in the know, that is the fall of Adam and Eve happening, don't you know? :p
     
  9. Lemex

    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    Ha! I like that. Nabokov was a good critic, his opinion is often to be trusted. :)
     
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  10. daemon

    daemon Contributor Contributor

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    Finnegans Wake reminds me of the spambots that keep popping up on this forum. There is just enough syntactical structure to make you feel like you are reading a sentence, but after reading so many words, you feel like the sentence morphed into another sentence without warning.
     
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  11. peachalulu

    peachalulu Member Reviewer Contributor

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    I agree but he was very harsh. I've read several of his interviews, I think they have one in the Paris Review online. He doesn't have a lot of favorites but it would be hard if you loved language and puzzles to find a lot of authors that you could like.
     
  12. thirdwind

    thirdwind Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    Nabokov had amazing taste when it came to literature.

    Anyway, here's a relevant snippet from an interview he did for the Paris Review:
     
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