December 8, 2012
The Dubliners: The Dead
The portrait of Gabriel Conroy in The Dubliners: The Dead is an accurate rendition of the character in the story by James Joyce. This can be seen in the comparison of the story and the film portrayal, on the basis of role, relationships, motives and goals, self image, and tone. Gabriel Conroy plays the role of a protagonist in The Dead. Gabriel is a well educated teacher and writer, but he struggles with socializing. This is seen in both the story and the film. Although Gabriel is socially awkward, he is still happy and joyful when arriving at the party. He plays a role of being masculine and doing manly duties such as carving the goose for dinner. As he tries to be manly and adopt manly duties, he makes his wife, Gretta, feel as if he has a power over her. She loves him and encourages his tenderness towards her, yet she still has a disconnect with him in their marriage due to his social awkwardness and his controlling characteristics. Gabriel’s relationships with the women in the story and film are very awkward. He also has a disconnect with them, often coming off as rude. Many times he offends the women in the story and the film without intending it. For example, he assumes that the maid, Lily, will be getting married soon since she is done with school. He slightly teases her, which in turn causes her to become offensive. “The girl glanced back at him over her shoulder and said with great bitterness, ‘The men that is now is only all palaver and what they can get out of you’” (Joyce, 154). It is as if Lily is implying that, in their time, the men tried to flatter women, when really their words had no meaning. Gabriel at times portrayed this very thought that Lily had of men. Instead of turning around to Lily and apologizing to her for his remark he hurries off. Another example of Gabriel’s awkward relationships is when he is dancing and talking to Miss Ivors. She almost bombards him with many questions...
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