James Joyce's Eveline and Araby
James Joyce uses similar themes and language devices in both 'Araby'
and 'Eveline.' Although this is so, there are also important
differences to be noted. Joyce wrote these stories over one hundred
years ago but yet we can still relate to the issues covered in the
modern world today.
James Joyce could have written these short stories as an inspiration
from his own background or based them on the events happening in
Dublin at that time. These stories were written as a new century was
beginning. The people of Dublin soon realized the sense of hope for
the new century had faded due to the fall and death of Parnell. This
relates to both of the stories as a sense of false hope is given in
each. Joyce sensed exhaustion and emptiness in Dublin and these are
also the emotional results in both stories.
In 'Araby,' the story is written in first person narrative. This gives
you a chance to get a detailed point of view of the boy's feelings.
This makes you more emotionally involved in the story, as it becomes
more convincing if you understand the range of emotions the boy is
going through. On top of this, the story is written as though it were
an event, which happened many years ago. It could have been a
significant event in his life as it is very much portrayed in this
way. In 'Eveline,' the narration is third person. Although the
feelings are not expressed deeply, you can still get a sense of the
emotions she was feeling. These emotions are expressed greatly through
Themes are an important issue in both stories. Both stories contain
the themes of blind love, religion, family, poverty and paralysis. In
'Araby,' the boy falls for a girl whom he does not know. He is only
attracted to her appearance: 'Her dress swung as she moved her body,
and the soft rope of her hair tossed from side to side.' This could be
described as blind love as he becomes infatuated with the girl and is
willing and determined to do anything for her.
Family is also a significant theme as the boy relies on his aunt and
uncle on almost anything he wants. Firstly, he asks their permission
to go to the bazaar. Then he depends on his uncle to give him money to
go to the bazaar. A quote to back this up would be, 'When he was
midway through his dinner I asked him to give me the money to go to
the bazaar.' By depending on his uncle, this meant the boy had to wait
for hours before he could attend the bazaar. This may suggest that the
boy is dependant on his family regardless of his situation.
There are several references to religion in this story. This is
another theme of the story. The first sign of religion is on the
second line where he mentions the 'Christian Brothers' School,' I
think his neighbourhood could have been very religious because along