The Aspect of Modern Human Existence.
The story “Eveline”, which is written by James Joyce, opens in a seemingly nostalgia but when it ends, the heroine is stricken with a suddenly frenzy of distress.
The fist part of the story is unfolded with Eveline’s thought from the present back to the past memories, or forth to the dream of future. Even we are only able to see the action and plot from Eveline’s relatively subjected angle version, we still get a general picture of what is happening in our heroine’s life and her flow of thought.
Eveline’s happiness is largely from her carefree childhood. Now, its fragrance has turned into odor of dusty cretonne, mixed with the stale smell of her presents, she works hard in the house and at business, where she is constantly found fault with. She also felt in danger of her father’s violence; with no one can protect her. “The invariable squabble for money” wearies her unspeakably. She is insecure and mentally oppressed by the menial burdens necessitated by survival.
Since she meets sailor Frank, a lot of variety has been injected into her bored life. It is the excitement at first and gradually grows into fondness and love. Frank at least give her a chance to breath freely and heartily out of the suffocating life. But her father forbids her to see him, probably because of the stereotype image of sailors. Finally she decides to elope with Frank, which seems to be the only solution of all.
Eveline lived a hard life, arduous, boring and hopeless. But she still thinks that she has the right to happiness. Maybe that is what the modern human existence like in Author’s eyes. The outside world is a cage, with invisible bars, whereas the inner self longs for freedom. The conflict between this two are intense and central to the human survival. Frank’s exoticism fascinates Eveline and wins her heart. Than is true of human behavior to some extent. People like things sometime because they are different not because they are good.