Eveline’s Indecisive Struggle
James Joyce’s “Eveline” is a short story about a young woman of the same name who illustrates the pitfalls of holding onto the familiarity of her past when faced with the opportunity to start a new life. Eveline’s fears and indecisiveness prevent her from fulfilling her desire of escaping a life of mundane routine. The story takes place in the early twentieth century in Ireland. Eveline lives at home where she takes care of two children and her abusive father. It is an unpleasant life but it is what she promised to her dying mother. Eveline is faced with the chance to escape this life and start anew with her Fiancé, Frank. She is a character that is indecisive and lacks the confidence to abandon the security of familiarity. Eveline is timid, insecure, deceptive and filled with self-doubt. She is unhappy and wishes for a better life yet she keeps reminding herself of the things that she will be leaving behind. She expresses that she “wanted to live, she had a right to happiness.” and yet she does nothing to indicate that she truly believes this. She does not allow herself to let go of her past and of the burden of the promise that she made to her mother. Eveline desires escape and excitement, she wants to live a life free of routine but routine is all she knows and she has become dependent on it. She finds security in her unchanging childhood home; it is the only constant in her life. Her home life is all she has ever known; she has come to find a sense of comfort and security in it. It is a hard, tiresome life but at least she knows what to expect from it, and though she longs for a new life filled with excitement, she is incapable of overcoming her fear of the unknown. She has become too comfortable in the mundane routines of her life. Her home, like herself, always remains unchanged, and this is why she feels comfortable there, despite the unpleasantness. Nothing ever changes, and so she knows exactly...
...Eveline Cultural Case Study
"Eveline" begins with a young woman gazing out the window to a Dublin street. Dublin has become a part of Eveline. The setting is the only thing that gives Eveline a sense of security. She is too afraid to leave this setting; she is trapped. In Ireland, "she had those whom she had known all her life about her (512)." Most of her peers have moved on to a new life now, butEveline is forced to remain in the life of which she is accustomed to. She is trapped in the familiarity of her setting. The setting of the story greatly aids in the development of Eveline's character. Without the setting to portray her dull and plain life one would not be able to fully understanDd Eveline. Consequently, due to Eveline being trapped in the setting of the short story one is fully able to comprehend many things about her attitude and actions.
Her name, Eveline, could be a reference to the title character of a nineteenth-century pornographic novel, or it could be a reference to a song by the Irish poet Thomas Moore; either way, the name is likely to connote a woman sexually active before marriage. Smelling the dust from "cretonne" curtains, a heavy cotton material that is usually brightly colored, Eveline reflects on her life, beginning with her childhood. Looking at the objects around her that she might never see again,...
...Through careful and ingenious choice of points of view, diction, imagery and other miscellaneous stylistic devices, James Joyce, in one of his most famous short stories “Eveline”, successfully portrayed a picture of paralysis, which is appropriately in keeping with the theme of the story: The people of Ireland refuse to make any effort toward positive change for themselves.
“Eveline”, one of 14 short stories, may be used to serve as a case study of the whole book to gain a glimpse into the lives of the inhabitants of the city Dublin called as “Dubliners” by Joyce. It is a story of adolescence, and it is basically about her choice of the familiarity of a life in which she is mistreated by her abusive father and replacement of her dead mother in raising her younger siblings over the fear of change represented by starting a new life in a new country with the man who loves her. She is a 19-year-old immature emotionally undeveloped girl, and unable to decide between the gloomy present and unknown future.
The central theme of the story is paralysis. Characters are trapped in lives they abhor by events and forces they could control as well as those beyond their control. In these stories, adolescents and young adults become aware that they are or will be trapped, creating in them moral or spiritual paralysis that prevents them from escaping or avoiding the trap.
Point of View: Sympathetic and Objective
Joyce’s role, as a recorder of the city,...
Specific Symbols Used by James Joyce in "Eveline"
"Eveline" is one of the stories in "Dubliners" written by James Joyce who was an Irish
novelist, considered to be one of the most important and preeminent writers of his time.
"Dubliners is the book in which Joyce examines the middle class Irish society […] presents
his most comprehensive picture of the condition of women in Ireland"(Walzl 31). The story
"Eveline" is about a nineteenyearold girl, named Eveline, who is trying to decide between
going with her sailor boyfriend Frank to Buenos Aires, acquiring a better life and staying with
her family in Dublin. Even though "Eveline" is a very short story, James Joyce not only
successfully portrays her dilemma and inner conflicts but he also lets the reader feel his time's
difficulties in Dublin. He does not tell these things to reader directly but he chooses the words
so appropriately and he depicts the characters so successfully that despite the first impression
they make on the reader, these symbols refer to different meanings.
Firstly, Eveline is not just an ordinary character who is in a dilemma whether to stay or
to go but also she is a representative of all "women under patriarchy" (Cheng 101). She is a
young girl who has a lot of responsibilities, especially after her mother's last wish from her to ...
...is incredible because it makes the story flow a lot smoother. This style of writing is very hard to conquer but James Joyce holds the undisputed title. Due to the brilliance of James Joyce, the use of stream of consciousness in Dubliners has a great affect on his story.
From the two passages that were required to read, Joyce brings about similarities between his works. In "Araby" and "Eveline" his characters both had to overcome a struggle in their paths. In "Araby", the boy was scared to talk with this one girl that he absolutely adored. He had overcome his fear and one day had spoken with her. She had asked him about going to the Bazaar and he became interested and told her if he had taken the trip, he would return with something for her. Once he had made the magical trip, he had seen the Bazaar and was dazzled. By the time he had gotten there to buy anything, they were closing. Before we knew it, the Bazaar had closed and he wasn't able to purchase anything which made him sad. This comes to show that the things we desire the most we sometimes don't get.
In "Eveline", the young lady Eveline had been the daughter of a father who had favored his two sons over her. Her mother had died and she had promised her mother to keep the house together as long as possible. She had been struggling to survive and to keep the house together because of the hard work and dedication needed. She needed to keep food on the table and also make sure...
...Joyce’s short story, “Eveline”, the main character is faced with a life changing decision. Eveline, who is a young woman, has taken on the role of her deceased mother by caring and providing for her family. The daily chores she endeavors have really taken a toll on her psychological well-being. Fortunately for her, she has been given the opportunity to escape her home of Dublin with her so-called new lover, Frank. Once Eveline arrives at the station to escape her miserable life, her unsecure, self-doubting personality gets the best of her. Joyce really shocks his readers when they discover that Eveline decides to stay in Dublin and not escape with Frank. The way that Joyce created Eveline’s personality and family history allows us to make sense as to why Eveline made the decision that she did.
Eveline’s unconfident, self-doubting ways is one of the main reasons why she makes the decision to stay in Dublin. She has a very difficult time deciding what is right for her and what is right for her family. The decision of escaping to Buenos Ayres with Frank would be the right decision for her, but it would not be the right decision for her family’s wellbeing. As she sat next to the window contemplating whether or not to stay in Dublin, she held two letters in her lap. One of which was addressed to her brother, Henry, and the other to her father (McMahan et al. 6). This scene in Joyce’s story exemplifies...
...“Eveline”- An Opportunity That Was Let Go
“Eveline” is a short story out of the collection called the “Dubliners”, wrote by James Joyce. Joyce has written fifteen stories within “Dubliners”, all in which seem to follow the same pattern. Each story has it's own plot image. There tends to be four stages, that the plot goes through during each story; childhood, adolescence, mature life and public life. Joyce uses these stages as a symbolic representation. In this story of “Eveline,” a teenager is faced with two choices. She can either continue to live with her father or run away with her love, Frank. The demands of Eveline's family takes lead over romantic involvement.
The story begins with Eveline sitting at a window. Years ago there used to be a field there where she would play with other children. She was reminiscing back to her childhood when she felt as everything was perfect. As a child, Eveline lived in a world much different than the one she lives in now, a much happier time in her life where innocence was all she knew. Now Eveline and her brothers are all grown up. In the story, Eveline's family doesn't live a very comfortable life and seems to be poor, always arguing over money. Eveline gives the impression of a scared, uncertain young lady. Being only nineteen, she has dealt with many detriments. She takes on many responsibilities because her mother died...
The excerpt I chose is taken from the story Eveline, and it regards the main character Eveline is faced with the difficult decision of leaving with her partner to Buenos Aires, or staying behind. The passage highlights her struggle to make a decision.
In the beginning, the passage is meant to solidify the notion that Eveline does in fact want to go with Frank, her lover. It begins with a use of repetition; "Escape! She must escape! Frank would save her." Not only does this strengthen the notion of love between the characters, but it also highlights the sense of urgency in her thought. She even goes on to ask herself a rhetorical question; "Why should she be unhappy?" She is agitated by her own indecisiveness. This question is also used to remind the reader that this section of the passage is using stream of consciousness rather than narration. Yet another use of repetition is used shortly after, when she says "Frank would take her in his arms, fold her in his arms." She is clearly in love with him.
The next section seems to put description at the forefront, perhaps as a means of distracting the reader momentarily from the important decision at hand. The entire station is described in detail, for example the "swaying crowd", "The station was full of soldiers with brown baggages..." Most of this description could in fact be generated by Eveline to distract herself from the...
Joyce set up the collection to move from stories about childhood onto stories about adolescence and finally stories about mature life and public life, all within the confines of Ireland's big city. The text under interpretation is a bright example of a short story Joyce's "Eveline" was the advent between adolescence and maturity. The story's protagonist and title character, Eveline, is largely affected by the feminist issues of the time period. These feminist ideas are illustrated through Eveline's relationships with her family and boyfriend, as well the societal expectations, and her duties and obligations. Eveline is much like many young women in early twentieth century Ireland. With her mother having passed, she is expected to take care of her childhood home. Joyce writes that Eveline struggled to keep "her promise to keep the home together as long as she could," a promise she made to her mother while on her deathbed.
Speaking in terms of textual pragmatics Eveline's story is the shortest and the plot is pretty simple. The main point of this story in “Dubliners” by James Joyce rather seems to illustrate, through a short series of images and sensory details, the life of a common Dubliner. "She had hard work to keep the house together and to see that the two young children who had been left to her charge went to school regularly and got their meals regularly," Joyce writes. "It was hard...