Happy Bloomsday

In which our hero, Dr. Stephen T. Colbert, DFA, reads the part of Leopold Bloom in a chapter from James Joyce’s novel Ulysses
at the Bloomsday on Broadway XXIV celebration in 2005. (For more on Bloomsday, go here.)

Here’s the audio for the Lotus Eaters chapter. (Tip o’ the hat to Truth at Colbert Heroes, where you can also find the audio for the Calypso chapter.)

I’m an English major from way back (Marquette ’83, Northwestern ’84) and studied both Joyce and Irish history in several classes. This is a masterful reading of the novel’s stream-of-consciousness June 16th day in the life of an Irish Jew named Leopold Bloom. In the Lotus Eaters chapter, one of his stops is into a church where Mass is going on. Written by an Irish Catholic, read by an Irish Catholic. Enjoy!

Here’s the lead from the Time Out New York article cited elsewhere on the site, just before this reading took place in 2005:

It’s not just his shtick: Stephen Colbert actually is smarter than you. The poker-faced correspondent from The Daily Show with Jon Stewart is famed for his wrongheaded but smarmily confident TV persona, but it turns out that Colbert, 41, is a devout Catholic with the intellectual firepower to back up his religious and political lampoonery. He quotes Shakespeare and Robert Hayden at the drop of a hat, and seems equally comfortable parsing theology and the foibles of media personalities. Burnishing his brainiac profile, Colbert will be performing in the 24th annual Bloomsday fete at Symphony Space, the celebratory reading of James Joyce’s Ulysses (“Bloomsday” refers to June 16, 1904—the date of the events of the novel).


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