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).
Evans and Richard Harp, Locust Hill Press, 1998, 173–87.
[In the following essay, Fuhrel discusses the motif of the quest in Frank O'Connor's “The Man of the House” and Joyce's “Araby” and contrasts the setting, tone, point of view, and themes of the two stories.] A young man narrates a tale about a time when, as a boy, old enough to leave the house and travel some distance by himself but innocent in matters of the heart, he had created an imaginary world in which he was a hero.
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.
Much critical attention has focused on stylistic elements, especially the impact of the narrative voice in “Araby.” As scholars continue to mine Joyce's Dubliners for critical study, “Araby” remains one of the most highly regarded and popular stories in the volume. [In the following essay, Stein surveys the religious imagery in “Araby.”] As L. No matter the work, Joyce always views the order and disorder of the world in terms of the Catholic faith in which he was reared. [In the following essay, Lyons considers the influence of Chaucer's Prioress' Tale on Joyce's “Araby.”] When Joyce's commentators mention the influence of Chaucer, the detail they cite most frequently is the character of Molly Bloom, which reminds them in its licentiousness and common sense of the Wife of Bath. Avoid them, Miss Dale; they dazzle the penetration of the composer. Mountstuart see so little; they are bent on describing so brilliantly.” SOURCE: “Arabesques: Third Position of Concord,” in James Joyce Quarterly, Vol. For “Araby” displays characteristics of “Romance” described by Northrop Frye in Anatomy of Criticism most clearly as it concerns the hero's power of action: “If superior in degree to other men and to his environment, the hero is the typical hero of romance, whose actions are marvelous but who is himself... [In the following essay, Rosowski views the primary conflict in “Araby” “not between the child's and the adult's visions, but between psychological and factual realities.”] Readers have long recognized the importance of “Araby” in Joyce's canon. contributes to Joyce studies a predominantly valid discussion of plot. And all my soul shall strive to wake Sweet wonder in thine eyes. [In the following essay, Egan examines Joyce's utilization of Irish culture and history in “Araby.”] Although A. [In the following essay, Morrissey analyzes Joyce's narrative techniques.] In his analysis of Roland Barthes's poetics of the novel, Jonathan Culler points to a “major flaw” in Barthes: “the absence of any code relating to narration (the reader's ability to collect items which help to characterize a narrator and to place the text in a kind of communicative circuit).” SOURCE: “Narration of Reading in Joyce,” in Texas Studies in Literature and Language, Vol. Here, finally, is a narrator whose relation to his early self can be confidently gauged and whose interpretation of the past has some claim to authoritativeness—or so it seems.
Dubliners 1914 The Portable James Joyce 1947 The Essential James Joyce 1948 Chamber Music (poetry) 1907 A Portrait of the Artist As a Young Man (novel) 1916 Exiles (drama) 1918 Ulysses (novel) 1922 Poems Penyeach (poetry) 1927 Collected Poems (poetry) 1936 Finnegans Wake (novel) 1939 Stephen Hero (unfinished novel) 1944 Letters 3 Vols. Turn though he does at times to other sanctions for his beliefs, he never quite shakes off the power of “a symbol behind which are massed twenty centuries of authority and veneration.” Only... I think it can be shown, however, that Joyce's use of Chaucer is more than casual. SOURCE: “‘Araby’ and the Palimpsest of Criticism or, Through a Glass Eye Darkly,” in Antioch Review, Vol. SOURCE: “Araby,” in James Joyce and the Craft of Fiction: An Interpretation of Dubliners, Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 1972, pp. [In the following essay, San Juan offers a stylistic analysis of “Araby.”] Among the various reasons why the existing interpretations of “Araby” have failed to grasp the principle of organization informing the narrative, I would point to the wrong emphasis placed upon stylistic details—the texture of description, the rhetorical appeals of imagery and ambiguous allusions, symbols, and so on—and the distortion of form created by this emphasis. The third and final story of the childhood phase of the Dubliners (before adolescence, maturity, and public life), “Araby” portrays an early stage of the struggle that Joyce develops later in A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man and in Ulysses. SOURCE: “The Motivation for Anguish in Joyce's ‘Araby’,” in Studies in Short Fiction, Vol. SOURCE: “‘Sing Three Songs of Araby’: Theme and Allusion in Joyce's ‘Araby,’” in College Literature, Vol. SOURCE: “Romantic Ireland, Dead and Gone: Joyce's ‘Araby’ as National Myth,” in Colby Library Quarterly, Vol. Walton Litz points out that a “careful analysis of the last pages of ‘Araby’ shows how the boy's personal despair is extended symbolically until it encompasses religious and political failure,” perhaps insufficient attention has been given to the story's national imagery drawn from Irish culture and history and set in motion by the narrator's love for Mangan's sister, “the brown-clad figure... A fairly consistent level of ironic detachment helps us locate...By the time the young boy borrows money from his uncle and makes his way to the bazaar, most of the people have left and many of the stalls are closed.As he looks for something to buy his friend's sister, he overhears a banal young salesgirl flirt with two young men.Plot and Major Characters The narrator of “Araby” is a young boy living with his aunt and uncle in a dark, untidy home in Dublin that was once the residence of a priest, now deceased.The boy is infatuated with his friend's older sister, and often follows her to school, never having the courage to talk to her.When the disinterested salesgirl asks him if he needs help, he declines, and he walks through the dark, empty halls, disillusioned with himself and the world around him.Major Themes Each story in Dubliners contains an epiphanic moment toward which the controlled yet seemingly plotless narrative moves.SOURCE: “‘Araby’ and the Writings of James Joyce,” in Antioch Review, Vol. SOURCE: “The First Trinity,” in The Cracked Looking Glass: James Joyce and the Nightmare of History, Susquehanna University Press, 1992, pp. [In the following excerpt, Wachtel views “Araby” as the third story in a trilogy—the other two being “The Sisters” and “An Encounter”—and deems it an important transition to the other stories included in Dubliners.] Although they depict the meanness, entrapment, and blindness of the citizenry, the first two stories of Dubliners are actually about the discovery of those same qualities in the protagonists. [In the following essay, Norris explores stylistic elements of “Araby,” particularly the narrative voice in the story.] Joyce's “Araby” not only draws attention to its conspicuous poetic language: it performatively offers the beauty of its art as compensation to the thematized frustrations of the story. “‘Araby’ and the ‘Extended Simile.’” Twentieth Century Interpretations of Dubliners: A Collection of Critical Essays, edited by Peter K....“Araby,” third in the series, is the final example of such self-scrutiny before the... The little boy whose heart is broken by a city “hostile to romance,” transmutes his grief into a romance of language. Moreover, it is viewed as autobiographical, reflecting Joyce's own disillusionment with religion and love.As such, Dubliners is considered a collection of stories that parallel the process of initiation: the early stories focus on the tribulations of childhood, then move on to the challenges and epiphanies of adulthood.