In James Joyce ‘s short narrative, “ Araby ” , the talker ‘s vernal idealism and naA?ve phantasies are left tattered when a trip to the bazar awakens him to the dark worlds of his life. The storyteller, a unidentified stripling Catholic schoolboy, is populating in an oppressive and joyless environment, yet he is able to detach from the thwarting ghastliness of the milieus by plunging himself in a baffled infatuation for a vicinity miss. With unrestrained enthusiasm, the male child allows himself to be consumed with foolish lecherousness and worship for a miss whom he “ did non cognize if i?›hei?? would of all time talk to ” ( Araby 112 ) . In truth the miss, sister to the male child ‘s friend Mangan, is a practical alien, but in his head the male child has transformed the miss into an image worthy of spiritual devotedness. The male child feels as if his feelings for the girl maintain him shielded from the hostile and humdrum defeat of Dublin life, about as if these feelings grant him elevated position and therefore separate him from the multitudes. When the miss eventually speaks to the male child she confides that she could non travel to the bazar Araby, and the male child thirstily takes this chance to acquire closer to the object of his immature romanticism by assuring that he will travel to the bazar and return with a little souvenir for her. As he did with the miss, the male child allows his idyllic phantasies to transform his image of the bazar into something that it is non. The boy envisions Araby as an alien enchanted topographic point able to somehow grant him the ability to carry through his romantic desires. When Araby turns out to be a drab dark topographic point, missing any of the verve and exoticness the male child was depending would turn dreams into truth, the male child is faced with the harsh world that his phantasies are non actuality, and he realizes that his devotedness to this unsubstantiated image of a miss does non divide him from the desolation of his mundane life ; in fact, the letdown that is Araby awakens the male child to the fact that his immature dreams have blinded him to the cold and dead world of his ordinary life.
In the descriptions of his milieus the male child depicts a cold and dark atmosphere devoid of joy and visible radiation. The one freedom in this portrayal of darkness is Magnan ‘s sister, whom he portrays as the lone beginning of visible radiation in this black universe. The male child described the street he lived, North Richmond Street, on as “ being blind ” , the houses of the street as holding “ brown unflappable faces ” , and the suites of his ain house as being “ musty from holding been enclosed excessively long ” and “ littered with old useless documents ” ( Joyce 111 ) . These descriptions serve to convey how pent-up the male child feels by his dead milieus. In contrast to the difficult dark portrayal of North Richmond Street, the descriptions of the miss seem riddled with elation and easiness. The image of the miss was ever illuminated, whether it was “ her figure defined by the visible radiation from i?›ai?? half-opened door ” ( Joyce 111 ) or “ the visible radiation from the lamp. . . i?›lightingi?? up her hair ” ( Joyce 112 ) , and her every motion, even “ the soft rope of her hair i?›tossingi?? from side to side ” ( Joyce 111 ) , suggested a soft relaxation. In his head the male child transformed the image of the miss into an beatific portrayal worthy of spiritual devotedness. The male child ‘s infatuation pervades his every action and he clings to the image of the miss “ even in topographic points the most hostile to woo ” ( Joyce 111 ) , as if his feelings were a “ goblet ” that could steer him “ safely through a multitude of enemies ” ( Joyce 112 ) . The male child is blinded to the desolation of his being by devouring himself in feelings for the miss, for he believes that his feelings are like a coat of armour that shield him from the subjugation and mundaneness of mundane life.
The bazar Araby, harmonizing to the male child ‘s foolish ideas, is an chance that can convey to life the great love he feels for the image of the miss. He thinks that Araby will be a glance of the free and alien life that is in front of him, for he believes that his feelings for the miss are taking him down a life way that will divide him from the dowdiness around him. As he did with the miss, the male child lets his imaginativeness run wild and creates an extraordinary image of Araby in his head. The male child allows the Araby of his head ‘s oculus to “ project an Eastern captivation over i?›himi?? ” , and, as he had with the miss, allows his every idea to be infused with Araby ( Joyce 112 ) . This new compulsion further blinds the male child to the humdrum of his being because he now has Godhead intent, acquiring to Araby, and mundane duties can now be brushed aside as “ ugly humdrum kid ‘s drama ” that stand between him and his intent ( Joyce 112 ) . The male child is naively hinging all hopes for making a different sort of life for himself on a bazar that exists merely in his head.
The journey to Araby is a prefiguration of the great letdown to come. The male child embarks on his quest to Araby by train and seems surprised that the journey does non instantly place him in alien milieus ; alternatively, the male child finds himself “ in a third-class passenger car of a abandoned train ” that slowly creeps past “ catastrophic houses ” to drop him at an “ jury-rigged wooden platform ” ( Joyce 113 ) . The male child does non allow this first letdown to discourage him come ining the “ would be glorious bazar ” with his high outlooks integral, but every bit shortly as he enters the hall that houses Araby he senses that his idyllic phantasies have led him astray ( Joyce 112 ) . Alternatively of being greeted with the bunco and hustle of the alien, the male child is met with a “ silence like that which pervades a church after a service ” pervading through a hall bathed in darkness ( Joyce 114 ) . This image of silence and darkness is no different than all that surrounds the male child on North Richmond Street, and therefore no different from what he is seeking to get away. The concluding letdown for the male child comes when he approaches a bazar stall staffed by a disinterested miss with an English speech pattern, and all at one time he sees that his dreams of Araby held no truth. The world of Araby exposes the male child ‘s phantasies as the foolish desires of an immature “ animal driven and derided by amour propre ” ( Joyce 114 ) . This rousing to the fact that his phantasies fooled him do the male child besides realize that his intense feelings for the miss, a miss he knows merely by expressions, are truly merely based in shallow amour propre, go forthing the male child “ i?›burningi?? with anguish and choler ” ( Joyce 114 ) . The anguish the male child feels is most likely in portion because he now has no phantasies to get away to, and must confront the fact that he is an ordinary male child populating a drab and boring life.
The storyteller of “ Araby ” begins the narrative as a naA?ve schoolboy confidently leting his phantasies to screen him from the stagnant and insistent life that is his world. The male child was non afraid to whole-heartedly believe in his notion desires, and did non waver in believing that his outlooks would non allow him down. When the polar minute arises and his dreams are non shown to hold any footing in pragmatism, the male child is left to angrily confront his bare life. Basically, go toing the bazar Araby may be the experience that forced a immature adult male to halt life in a fantasy universe and get down life in world. Although this narrative could go forth many readers with a sense of unhappiness and letdown for a male child whose hopes have been shattered, it left me with a sense of sense of hope. The subject of the narrative was that one can non conceal from the rough worlds of life, but underlying that was a non so obvious subject ; that is, a subject of passion and of whole-heartedly nisus for what one believes in. The male child chased his phantasy and was harshly let down, but his actions were permeated with passion and aspiration. The hope I was left with was the hope that the male child could direct his enthusiasm, passion, and drive towards ends that would take him to a topographic point nothingness of subjugation and darkness.