Sunday, August 28, 2011
"Teems of times and happy returns"
After finally completing that big list about James Joyce in the last post, I wanted to let it simmer atop the page for a while. I didn't intend to let the blog go dormant for three weeks, though.
Things have gotten a little hectic here lately, my life is becoming more and more like that of a normal young person: very busy. I'm only working 20 hours a week (to avoid succumbing to the soul-killing clutches of a cubicle) but my girlfriend and I are sharing a car and managing to stay occupied from morning until early evening, which doesn't allow me all that much creative/reading/relaxing/baseball-watching time. I'm not stressing about it though, because I know plenty of people my age have it a lot worse than me. Aside from the slow suffocation of my finances (and similar bodily reactions to the intense Texas heat), life here in Austin is pretty damn good. At the moment I'm sitting outside at a coffee shop with wooden decks extending up into the woods. Very cool place.
In the intervening three weeks between blog posts, I did manage to complete two rather large and detailed hip hop album reviews as part of a trio. I'm in the midst of writing the third review and once they're all finished I will share them here. I've got a bunch of posts coming up soon (if I can find the time) including a big one covering all the new Wu-Tang-related music that's springing up right now.
For the moment, I want to share a few (mostly) Joyce-related links that have interested me lately:
- friend of this blog Bobby Campbell is a very talented artist and graphic designer and he recently produced a smooth, peripatetic illustration of the scene in chapter 3 of Ulysses where Stephen is "walking into eternity along Sandymount strand" that is definitely worth checking out. This represents one of my favorite sections from Joyce, as I wrote about last month.
- More great stuff from BC, he created some spectacular looking artwork (including the piece atop this blogpost) demonstrating Vico's four cycles of history which Joyce used as the structure of Finnegans Wake. Go check it out at the Maybe Logic Academy blog, it is part of a nice essay entitled "Falling on Deaf Ears" elaborating on Vico's philosophy, the Wake, Marshall McLuhan, and more.
- The past couple weeks I've been reading an extremely fascinating essay on Finnegans Wake by Dan Weiss that was posted on the The Brazen Head blog. It is written in an easy-to-read style of short sections and it serves as both an introduction to the complexities of the Wake and an exploration of how Joyce tried to construct it so as to encompass the entire universe, thus creating something that closely resembles modern hyptertext and the internet. The essay is lengthy but well-written and worth the read. Another piece covering Joyce in a similar vein (internet, universe, hypertextuality) made my brain cells swell recently; it explores Joyce, Jorge Luis Borges, and Thomas Pynchon and their attempts at creating a "cosmic web" through their art.
- This last link is not exactly Joyce related (though the author maintains multiple blogs with Joyce and Wake material), but Steven James Pratt (aka Fly Agaric 23) wrote an intriguing and thought-provoking blog post about the recent race riots in the UK using his favorite splicing style of weaving together mini essays, poems, and article clips. I highly recommend you check it out.
Please stay tuned as there will be more to come soon.