Saturday, September 21, 2013

Our Final Meeting

I took this photo of the lovely group of people assembled for today's final meeting.

Today we had our final meeting, hosted by Doc JPK at his 120-year-old manse. It was a delightful occasion. Joining us were representatives from the student group that also read the book over the summer. 

Adam T. said of the book's ending that he got the sense that both Leopold and Molly had come to a new perspective on their marriage, and that each was headed in a better direction. He said that he was glad to have gotten to know them, and glad that he could be happy for them.

Adam's sentiments are related to one of the key ideas I'll take from today's discussion—the notion of Joyce's novel as, ultimately, an illustration of Stephen's belief in "the eternal affirmation of the spirit of man in literature," a point of disagreement between him and Bloom. Though Bloom may not care all that much about literature (beyond his own modest poetic efforts and his passing interest in smut), Ulysses itself becomes an affirmation of Bloom (after all, it ends with Molly saying Yes to him) and his quotidian, human existence.

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