The Araby's Sparks
“Araby”, a story told by a mystery narrator that ensnares the reader in an interesting and complex line of desires and disappointments. The story starts as the sister of the speaker's friend becomes the object of the narrators affection. He attempts to dazzle her with a gift from the Araby bazaar which is brought in to depict the idea of breaking free of the convening Dublin neighborhood. Thus through the uneasy setting and diverse range of characters, James Joyce let's the reader know that the theme of the narrative is centered around the conflict of an individual and the refusal of the reality of the world around him.
Dublin to the speaker is nothing more than a constant bother in his life. James Joyce discusses Dublin, Ireland as being a very lack luster and tight nit city as he says the area “stood at the blind end” (Joyce 2). Which isn't the first time James Joyce went into detail regarding Dublin and all its wonders. His narratives are at a constant repetition regarding this neighborhood. He depicts this fulfilling need when he discusses the “Araby” and the desire for Mangan's sister. Through out the narrative the speaker is stuck with the need to see her or hear her, he often conflicts with himself and those around him on whether or not to pursue the
Plunkett Page 2 matter. However his need for her grew to the point where it surpassed everything around him. The speaker, who is guessed to be a younger man, “I had hardly any patience with the serious work of life..” (48), is conflicted to what is to be assumed a common thing for most boys. Yet in a passing glance through the storyline the reader can come to terms that this is no mere infatuation, it is a growing love affair.
One might consider the hatre...
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... useless, to make my interest in her wares seem more real. Then I turned away slowly and walked down the middle of the bazaar” (99-101).
The theme through the narrative comes to halt as the young man is finally met with the crushing reality of his love affair. His dreams and desires turn from something that lightened the dreary and desolate world around him to something that merely confirmed its darkness. The boy's own immaturity becomes his downfall and thus completely the circle as he grows into the citizen that wanders Dublin, Ireland like all the ones before him. 'Araby' no longer is a place of hope for a future but a reminder of what truly is. The reality of the world is set and the young man finally comes to terms with it.
Joyce, James. "Araby." Araby Online. E-server, 1994-2013. Web. 13 Apr. 2014. .
The protagonist of Araby is a young boy who is infatuated with his friend Mangan 's sister. The setting, and the introduction of the this woman is nearly identical to that in A&P. Joyce 's narrator spends his time “lay[ing] on the floor in the front parlour watching [Magnan 's sister 's] door” (Joyce 182). Immediately from the outset of the story, Joyce has rendered the narrator as someone who frivolously awaits his female interest with no other motivation. The main character then finally encounters Magnan 's sister personally, where she tells him about a bazaar near town called Araby. Joyce 's protagonist is shocked when Magnan 's sister “addresse[s] the first words to [him]” (Joyce 183) as he has spent a plethora of time yearning for an interaction with her. Joyce has implemented the idea into Araby that males are inherently reliant on females. Interestingly, Joyce has incorporated another male character in his story that is presented as inferior to his female counterpart. The purpose of the narrator 's uncle in the story is to slow the main character from going to Araby. The Uncle comes home much later than expected, and is chastised my his wife: “Can 't you give him the money and let him go? You 'v kept him late enough as it
... is not at all that he imagined. It is dismal and dark and thrives on the profit motive and the eternal lure its name evokes in men. The boy realizes that he has placed all his love and hope in a world that does not exist except in his imagination. He feels angry and betrayed and realizes his self-deception. He feels he is “a creature driven and derided by vanity” and the vanity is his own (Sample Essays).
As soon as “Araby” begins, the religious allusions do also. Joyce immediately puts readers in a religious frame of mind as the narrator speaks of the Christian Brother’s School and the priest who formerly lived in his house. Shortly after a religious mindset is formed, the narrator speaks of “the wild garden behind the house [containing]
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 future to see that his life is not ruined by acts of immaturity. And, in “Araby”, we encounter another young man facing a crisis of the spirit who attempts to find a very limiting connection between his religious and his physical and emotional passions. In all of these stories, we encounter boys in the cusp of burgeoning manhood. What we are left with, in each, is the understanding that even if they can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel, we can. These stories bind all of us together in their universal messages…youth is something we get over, eventually, and in our own ways, but we cannot help get over it.
James Joyce's use of religious imagery and religious symbols in "Araby" is compelling. That the story is concerned somehow with religion is obvious, but the particulars are vague, and its message becomes all the more interesting when Joyce begins to mingle romantic attraction with divine love. "Araby" is a story about both wordly love and religious devotion, and its weird mix of symbols and images details the relationship--sometimes peaceful, sometimes tumultuos--between the two. In this essay, I will examine a few key moments in the story and argue that Joyce's narrator is ultimately unable to resolve the differences between them.
“Araby” tells the story of a young boy who romanticizes over his friend’s older sister. He spends a lot of time admiring the girl from a distance. When the girl finally talks to him, she reveals she cannot go to the bazaar taking place that weekend, he sees it as a chance to impress her. He tells her that he is going and will buy her something. The boy becomes overwhelmed by the opportunity to perform this chivalrous act for her, surely allowing him to win the affections of the girl. The night of the bazaar, he is forced to wait for his drunken uncle to return home to give him money to go. Unfortunately, this causes the boy to arrive at the bazaar as it is closing. Of the stalls that remained open, he visited one where the owner, and English woman, “seemed to have spoken to me out of a sense of duty” (Joyce 89) and he knows he will not be able to buy anything for her. He decides to just go home, realizing he is “a creature driven and derided with vanity” (Joyce 90). He is angry with himself and embarrassed as he...
The narrator in “Araby” is a young man who lives in an uninteresting area and dreary house in Dublin. The only seemingly exciting thing about the boy’s existence is the sister of his friend Mangum that he is hopelessly in love with; “…her name was like a summons to all my foolish blood.” (Joyce 2279) In an attempt to impress her and bring some color into his own gray life, he impulsively lies to her that he is planning on attending a bazaar called Arab. He also promises the gi...
A collection of short stories published in 1907, Dubliners, by James Joyce, revolves around the everyday lives of ordinary citizens in Dublin, Ireland (Freidrich 166). According to Joyce himself, his intention was to "write a chapter of the moral history of [his] country and [he] chose Dublin for the scene because the city seemed to [b]e the centre of paralysis" (Friedrich 166). True to his goal, each of the fifteen stories are tales of disappointment, darkness, captivity, frustration, and flaw. The book is divided into four sections: childhood, adolescence, maturity, and public life (Levin 159). The structure of the book shows that gradually, citizens become trapped in Dublin society (Stone 140). The stories portray Joyce's feeling that Dublin is the epitome of paralysis and all of the citizens are victims (Levin 159). Although each story from Dubliners is a unique and separate depiction, they all have similarities with each other. In addition, because the first three stories -- The Sisters, An Encounter, and Araby parallel each other in many ways, they can be seen as a set in and of themselves. The purpose of this essay is to explore one particular similarity in order to prove that the childhood stories can be seen as specific section of Dubliners. By examining the characters of Father Flynn in The Sisters, Father Butler in An Encounter, and Mangan's sister in Araby, I will demonstrate that the idea of being held captive by religion is felt by the protagonist of each story. In this paper, I argue that because religion played such a significant role in the lives of the middle class, it was something that many citizens felt was suffocating and from which it was impossible to get away. Each of the three childhood stories uses religion to keep the protagonist captive. In The Sisters, Father Flynn plays an important role in making the narrator feel like a prisoner. Mr. Cotter's comment that "… a young lad [should] run about and play with young lads of his own age…" suggests that the narrator has spent a great deal of time with the priest. Even in death, the boy can not free himself from the presence of Father Flynn (Stone 169) as is illustrated in the following passage: "But the grey face still followed me. It murmured; and I understood that it desired to confess something.
He has grown up in the backwash of a dying city and has developed into an individual sensitive to the fact that his town’s vivacity has receded, leaving the faintest echoes of romance, a residue of empty piety, and symbolic memories of an active concern for God and mankind that no longer exists. Although the young boy cannot fully comprehend it intellectually, he feels that his surroundings have become malformed and ostentatious. He is at first as blind as his surroundings, but Joyce prepares us for his eventual perceptive awakening by mitigating his carelessness with an unconscious rejection of the spiritual stagnation of his community. Upon hitting Araby, the boy realizes that he has placed all his love and hope in a world that does not exist outside of his imagination. He feels angry and betrayed and comes to realize his self-deception, describing himself as “a creature driven and derided by vanity”, a vanity all his own (Joyce). This, inherently, represents the archetypal Joycean epiphany, a small but definitive moment after which life is never quite the same. This epiphany, in which the boy lives a dream in spite of the disagreeable and the material, is brought to its inevitable conclusion, with the single sensation of life disintegrating. At the moment of his realization, the narrator finds that he is able to better understand his particular circumstance, but, unfortunately, this
I believe Araby employs many themes; the two most apparent to me are escape and fantasy though I see signs of religion and a boy's first love. Araby is an attempt by the boy to escape the bleak darkness of North Richmond Street. Joyce orchestrates an attempt to escape the "short days of winter", "where night falls early" and streetlights are but "feeble lanterns" failing miserably to light the somberness of the "dark muddy lanes"(Joyce 38). Metaphorically, Joyce calls the street blind, a dead end; much like Dublin itself in the mid 1890s when Joyce lived on North Richmond Street as a young boy. A recurrent theme of darkness weaves itself through the story; the boy hides in shadows from his uncle or to coyly catch a glimpse of his friend Mangan's sister who obliviously is his first love.
In the story of, "Araby" James Joyce concentrated on three main themes that will explain the purpose of the narrative. The story unfolded on North Richmond Street, which is a street composed of two rows of houses, in a desolated neighborhood. Despite the dreary surroundings of "dark muddy lanes" and "ash pits" the boy tried to find evidence of love and beauty in his surroundings. Throughout the story, the boy went through a variety of changes that will pose as different themes of the story including alienation, transformation, and the meaning of religion (Borey).