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Essay about Comparison of Araby and The Garden Party

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In the introductions of James Joyce's Araby and Katherine Mansfield's The Garden Party the main themes of the stories are immediately introduced, as in any effective short story. Through the detailed descriptions of the settings, the central themes of each story are presented. The relationships between the main characters and their respective families are introduced and provide background information which helps to further understand the themes of each story. The main themes of the stories are further developed when the characters are introduced. In the introductions of Araby and The Garden Party the main themes are introduced through the descriptive settings, the family backgrounds, and the development of the main characters.

The theme of light and darkness is apparent throughout Joyce's Araby. The dark, sombre setting of the story creates a sense of hopelessness within the narrator, an unnamed young boy. The negative connotations associated with the city of Dublin are used to illustrate the narrator's state of hopelessness. It is only through his illusions that he is able to catch a glimpse of light amidst the darkness.

The introduction of Joyce's Araby immediately creates a dark, mundane setting for the story. The repetition of the word "blind" introduces the theme of light and darkness. The streets of Dublin are described as "being blind"(2236) suggesting they do not lead anywhere. The houses are personified as being sombre and having "brown imperturbable faces"(2236), creating the shift from a literal setting to a state of mind. The streets remain silent until the boys are set free from school (2236), comparing the school to a prison: mundane and repetitive, and comparing their departure from school to a type of li...


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...by and The Garden Party the themes are apparent throughout the introduction. In Araby the setting begins in a state of darkness introducing the main theme of light and darkness. Similarly, the beautiful setting described at the beginning of The Garden Party establishes the upper-class ranking of the Sheridan family, demonstrating class distinction. Although the two main characters are from different classes, the family backgrounds of each provide information which helps to further develop their themes respectively. The struggles which both characters face demonstrate character development and contribute to the themes of the stories. Both short stories prove to be literally effective in that they disclose the main themes at the outset of each story. Although the themes may alter over the course of the stories, they are clearly defined in their respective introductions.


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