Eveline

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In “Eveline,” James Joyce uses the juxtaposition of the ever-changing setting and the unchanging stoic character of Eveline in order to exemplify the character’s reluctance and inability to move forward. James Joyce is known for his juxtaposition of light and dark throughout his short stories, specifically in his story “Araby.” I would argue that Joyce is using the contrast of opposing forces described above between the setting and the character in a similar way as he was light and dark.

“Araby” and “Eveline” were both written in the year 1914 and “Eveline” precedes “Araby” in the larger work. They are both part of Joyce’s larger work Dubliners which is a work of fifteen short stories. This compilation of stories all share the setting of Dublin, Ireland, in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. The stories inside Dubliners seem to share more than their setting, in my opinion they share their use of symbolism and imagery. Peter de Voogd says it this way, “James Joyce was fully aware of the visual aspects of his work, and consciously manipulated his readers’ visualizations.” This is what Voogd argues in his essay “Imaging Eveline, Visualized Focalizations in James Joyce’s Dubliners.” Voogd starts his argument by saying, “Surely one of the most intriguing aspects of the reading act is the mysterious and intricate process by which most of us mentally visualise what we are reading.” I agree with this assurstion, but also argue that Joyce was not only fully aware of the visual aspects of his works, but also how his juxtaposition of opposites would manipulate his readers’ visualizations and perceptions. Light and dark are elements in literary works that are often used to adjust mood and atmosphere. In “Araby” it is apparent to me that Joyce is using this visual work to allow us into the character's head. The main character in “Araby,” a young boy, has fallen in love with his friend Managan’s sister, when the narrator speaks of her she is always...
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