The Dead by James Joyce

Topics: Love, James Joyce, The Dead Pages: 4 (1352 words) Published: February 26, 2013
One could easily overpass the short story, "The Dead" by James Joyce. Although Julia and Kate Morkan are the hostesses of an annual dance, this story actually revolves around two of the guests: Gabriel and his wife,Gretta Conroy. At the beginning of the party, Gabriel and Gretta are presented to be a very happy couple. Gabriel's love towards Gretta is clearly shown. Since "The Dead" takes place during the holiday season in Dublin, Ireland, weather conditions are harsh and snow covers the ground. Gabriel decides to rent a hotel room when he becomes concerned for his wife and does not want her to become ill if they travel in the severe weather conditions following the party. He loves her deeply and is more concerned with her health than getting home and back to his children quickly. Throughout the dinner Gretta reciprocates the love, until something suddenly changes her attitude for the night.

With his wife, Gretta, Gabriel Conroy attends the annual dancing party hosted by his two aging aunts, Julia and Kate Morkan, and their niece, Mary Jane. At the party, Gabriel experiences some uncomfortable confrontations. He makes a personal comment to Lily, the housemaid, that provokes a sharp reply, and during a dance he endures the taunts of his partner, Miss Ivors. Finally, Gabriel sees Gretta enraptured by a song sung toward the end of the party. Later, he learns that she was thinking of a former lover who had died for her. He sadly contemplates his life.James Joyce's The Dead appears to be a story about the annual Christmas party thrown by the Morkan sisters and their niece, Mary Jane. It goes into detail about several of the guests in attendance and describes the wonderful evening they all had, including singing, dancing, and a feast fit for a king. But when examining the story more closely, it becomes evident that there is more to this account then just that on the surface. The Dead is a story about love, lost loves, and the inability to forget those who have been...
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