James Joyce's Ulysses - an essential classic

Ref: C3529048

James Joyce’s Ulysses – an essential classic Published in 1922, Ulysses is the essential epic novel of the 20th century, a work which still seems so far ahead of us that we struggle to keep up. Its 18 chapters – each a fresh ‘take’ on the real-time activities of our urban heroes Leopold Bloom and Stephen Dedalus on a single day in Dublin (16 June 1904) – provide a thrilling master-class in what fiction can achieve. Unlocking the particular style of each chapter and pursuing Joyce’s poignant (and hilarious) unifying theme of all that is ‘thrown away’, will be the focus of these ten weekly sessions, which will include plenty of reading aloud for entertainment. What do we 'throw away' in the course of an average day, and is a 'gorgonzola cheese sandwich' enough to compensate for our loss?!

Course aim

To acquire a confident appreciation of the nature and achievement of James Joyce's Ulysses, an often neglected classic of English literature.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed
  • This course is suitable for beginners and improvers

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Enjoy the comedy and infinite wit of James Joyce's epic novel of everyday life on a single day in Dublin in 1904.
  • Understand the style and ambition of Joyce's fiction.
  • Relate Joyce's novel to the personal and historical circumstances of its publication.
  • Read with confidence the most challenging of literary texts.
  • Share reading responses and insights with a group of fellow readers.

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning
  • You may be asked to undertake additional work in your own time to support your learning

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • You will be encouraged to share your work with the group and discuss your learning
  • You will be encouraged to consider other students work and give your opinions and suggestions

What else do I need to know?

  • Need a copy of the Oxford World's Classics edition of James Joyce's Ulysses, edited by Jeri Johnson.

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading is required but research on the subject on the internet or in the library may be helpful
  • Advisable to read 50-100 pages of Ulysses each week during the course.

What can I do next?

Download full Course information sheet

James Joyce's Ulysses - an essential classic


You can if you meet all of the following requirements:

  • are paying the standard fee or are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • are paying with a credit/debit card or are not paying a fee because of a qualifying benefit
  • have a valid email address
  • have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2017
  • have read and accept the standard terms and conditions
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