Riku’s review of The Odyssey > Likes and Comments

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message 1: by Riku (new)

Riku Sayuj Moonbutterfly wrote: "After I finish up reading about the Germans, I'm going to start on the Iliad. This has been a year of big books and series for me.

Great review."


Thanks :) I am starting on the germans..


message 2: by Ian (new)

Ian Pagan-Gladfly Well done, Riku.

Remember, you did have to drag that recommendation out of me. ;)

I read the Iliad when I was at school and took ages, even though it felt great just to have it in my hands.

It's great that you did the Odyssey so quickly.

It will be interesting to see whether you derive any benefit from reading the Odyssey when you read "Ulysses".

I assume that a lot of readers in Joyce's time would have read Homer and their reading would have been informed by their familiarity.

Now that you've read it, I recommend that you watch the film "O Brother Where Art Thou?".

Riku wrote: "The characters repeat themselves in dialogue and it attitude, all major dramatic points are revealed in advance as prophesy and every important story event is told again at various points by various characters."

At this point in your review, I thought I had stumbled on a review of "1Q84".


message 3: by Riku (new)

Riku Sayuj Elizabeth wrote: "Does this mean you're reading Ulysses soon? "

Ya... unless i get some other excuse to put it off.


message 4: by Riku (new)

Riku Sayuj Shan wrote: "The Odyssey, eh? I think I've heard of it."

:) Good for you!


message 5: by Riku (new)

Riku Sayuj Ian wrote: "It will be interesting to see whether you derive any benefit from reading the Odyssey when you read "Ulysses".

Now that you've read it, I recommend that you watch the film "O Brother Where Art Thou?".

Riku wrote: "The characters repeat themselves in dialogue and it attitude, all major dramatic points are revealed in advance as prophesy and every important story event is told again at various points by various characters."

At this point in your review, I thought I had stumbled on a review of "1Q84". "


I will certainly try to talk about whether reading the classic had any impact on how I dig Joyce..

I have seen the movie - is it related in any way? Do I have to watch it again?

1Q84 eh? I had heard good reviews on it till now...


message 6: by Ian (new)

Ian Pagan-Gladfly The film is loosely based on Homer.

It is a "must-see-again" ;)

I rated 1Q84 5 stars, and wasn't worried about the repetition.


message 7: by Riku (new)

Riku Sayuj Elizabeth wrote: "Riku wrote: "Elizabeth wrote: "Does this mean you're reading Ulysses soon? "

Ya... unless i get some other excuse to put it off."

Do it. It really is fascinating, if not always enjoyable. Um, how..."


I consider only Othello to have been satisfactorily read by me... I am strong enough to quote from most plays etc but, well, haven't really imbibed, so to speak.


message 8: by Riku (new)

Riku Sayuj Elizabeth wrote: "There's a chapter in Ulysses about Hamlet. I'm not sure what it would be like to read the book without that. Could be fine; might just inspire you to read it. :-)"

Oh thanks for the tip...


message 9: by Mummy (new)

Mummy A person could spend half their life just reading all the books and plays that Joyce alludes to in order never to miss a reference when they finally approach Ulysses.


message 10: by Riku (new)

Riku Sayuj Petra X wrote: "A person could spend half their life just reading all the books and plays that Joyce alludes to in order never to miss a reference when they finally approach Ulysses."

I wouldn't mind :)


message 11: by Mummy (new)

Mummy Plan on reading it in old age then!


message 12: by Riku (new)

Riku Sayuj Petra X wrote: "Plan on reading it in old age then!"

There is always an option to re-read it then.


message 13: by Mummy (new)

Mummy Do people climb Everest twice?


message 14: by Riku (new)

Riku Sayuj Petra X wrote: "Do people climb Everest twice?"

I know these two guys...


message 15: by Nandakishore (new)

Nandakishore Varma Riku, the similarities between Indian and Greek myths are striking. I understand your reluctance to "analyse" a great epic - however, I urge you to do so. Many analyses and retellings of the Mahabharatha has enriched the experience of the epic, I find.


message 16: by Riku (new)

Riku Sayuj Nandakishore wrote: "Riku, the similarities between Indian and Greek myths are striking. I understand your reluctance to "analyse" a great epic - however, I urge you to do so. Many analyses and retellings of the Maha..."

Oh I analysed it to my heart's content for myself. I just didn't want to put it out here...


message 17: by Nandakishore (new)

Nandakishore Varma Riku wrote: "Oh I analysed it to my heart's content for myself. I just didn't want to put it out here... "

I suggest you do it. Don't worry, your analysis is as valid as anybody else's!


message 18: by Riku (new)

Riku Sayuj Nandakishore wrote: "Riku wrote: "Oh I analysed it to my heart's content for myself. I just didn't want to put it out here... "

I suggest you do it. Don't worry, your analysis is as valid as anybody else's!"


I'll probably come back and do that after i read Iliad. Half knowledge is a dangerous thing, as they say.


message 19: by Riku (last edited Feb 27, 2012 04:44PM) (new)

Riku Sayuj Moonbutterfly wrote: "The group "Classics and the Western Canon" is currently reading the Iliad. It's a great group in general if your interested. They started reading it in January, but I plan on following it once I fi..."

I might jump in too if i finish the coming of third reich fast enough... could you give me a link to the group?


message 20: by Riku (new)

Riku Sayuj Moonbutterfly wrote: "Does this work?

http://www.goodreads.com/group/show/1..."


Yup! Sorry for the trouble.


message 21: by David (new)

David Sarkies I've been meaning to read Ulysses for a while, and when I discovered that it was based on The Odyssey, I am even more interested.


message 22: by Karen (new)

Karen Ullysses is so much more difficult than The Odyssey, it didn't really help me, but I read Ullysses- rejoiced when I was done with it.


message 23: by Riku (new)

Riku Sayuj Karen wrote: "Ullysses is so much more difficult than The Odyssey, it didn't really help me, but I read Ullysses- rejoiced when I was done with it."

The Odyssey provides only the backbone. The rest of literature provides the flesh :)


message 24: by Alan (new)

Alan Well, Fagles was, along with James Merrill, the best literary student of my undergrad Shakespeare mentor, Baird of Amherst College. Fagles had a lisp, so Baid recommended he NOT go into teacheing--bu he did, got a job at Princeton, and wrote some fine transaltions. Not wuite the rhythmic punch of Fitzgerals, I think, but excellent in their way. As for Ulysses, as a narrative it's easier than Homer. But of course, stylistically, it's modernist, and tumultuous. Maybe the Italian authroities were right to think Joyce's Italian better than his English! (He taugh both, in Italy, and his test results were higher in Italian.)


message 25: by Alan (new)

Alan As for Ulysses/Odyss himself, I think that Vegil does him homage in his debate against Ajax, which Ulysses wins. Ajax may be the best fighter among the Greeks, but he lacked debate skills (so valued by the Romans, of course). The wily Ulysses is esp wily as a politician and debater--just like Clinton, Obama, and who else?


message 26: by Riku (new)

Riku Sayuj Alan wrote: "Well, Fagles was, along with James Merrill, the best literary student of my undergrad Shakespeare mentor, Baird of Amherst College. Fagles had a lisp, so Baid recommended he NOT go into teacheing..."

Thanks for sharing that! Which is the best (english) translation of Homer you have read, Alan?


message 27: by Alan (new)

Alan Thanks for asking, but since I don't know Greek, I'm no real source of this (my nephew teaches it, so I should ask him). I prefer the Fitzgerald trans., but Fagles does capture some energy and contemporaneity missing there.
I do have preferred translations of the Aeneid (my teacher, Rolfe Humphries') and Pushkin's Evgeni Onegin (Elton, not Nabokov) and surely Ovid, Martial, Lucretius and others. (Many, again, by Humphries, who let me borrow his Seneca Thyestes off his shelf when I was a Freshman in his class at Amherst College.)


message 28: by Riku (new)

Riku Sayuj Alan wrote: "Thanks for asking, but since I don't know Greek, I'm no real source of this (my nephew teaches it, so I should ask him). I prefer the Fitzgerald trans., but Fagles does capture some energy and con..."

Thanks. I have been looking for a copy of Chapman's Homer too. (though I am not sure if it was Chapman of the epic itself that inspired Keats so)


message 29: by Karen (new)

Karen Riku wrote: "Karen wrote: "Ullysses is so much more difficult than The Odyssey, it didn't really help me, but I read Ullysses- rejoiced when I was done with it."

The Odyssey provides only the backbone. The res..."


I agree, and I am not well versed in Shakespeare at all, my husband is but I can't get him to read Ullysses. I read it to prove I could, and I loved Leopold Bloom, but it was very difficult and I am not sure if Joyce wrote it for complete understanding in mind.
I read the Richmond Latimore translation of The Odyssey, beautifully written.


message 30: by Eric (new)

Eric Alan wrote: "Thanks for asking, but since I don't know Greek, I'm no real source of this (my nephew teaches it, so I should ask him). I prefer the Fitzgerald trans., but Fagles does capture some energy and con..."

Vide Guy Davenport's "Another Odyssey". Indispensable, and funny. Fitzgerald takes the more recent cake; Lattimore, for his severe literalism, is--as the rest of them--to be read, but not to be expected of much poetically; Chapman is great; Pope is great; Logue's Iliad is phenomenal.


message 31: by Karen (new)

Karen Eric wrote: "Alan wrote: "Thanks for asking, but since I don't know Greek, I'm no real source of this (my nephew teaches it, so I should ask him). I prefer the Fitzgerald trans., but Fagles does capture some e..."

It's the only one I have read, so I have nothing to compare and I did love it.


message 32: by Riku (new)

Riku Sayuj Eric wrote: "Alan wrote: "Thanks for asking, but since I don't know Greek, I'm no real source of this (my nephew teaches it, so I should ask him). I prefer the Fitzgerald trans., but Fagles does capture some e..."

Quite a list! Thanks!


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