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Compare the impact of enviroment on the individuals in the four stories "Eveline," "The...

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babycha | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted February 4, 2011 at 12:48 AM via web

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Compare the impact of enviroment on the individuals in the four stories "Eveline," "The Boarding House,", "The Sisters," and "The Dead."

The consequences of enviroment on individuals whether they are bad or favorable.

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Doug Stuva | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted February 6, 2011 at 3:34 AM (Answer #1)

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Your question is too big and complicated to answer in this format, so I've edited it down to just a comparison.

Environment is central to all of the stories in Joyce's collection, Dubliners, and that includes the four you've asked about.  This is suggested, of course, by the fact that the collection is named after the people who live in the particular city of Dublin. 

Environment, of course, includes the cultural as well as the geographical.

The characters in these stories are trapped or paralyzed by their environments.    A woman is trapped in roles fit for a mother (although certainly not great for a mother, either), even though she is only a daughter and sister.  She has an opportunity to escape, but freezes and chooses not to. 

Women with no education have little means of advancement and resort to trapping a husband, and he, facing religious and cultural ideas of duty and responsible, allows himself to be a victim. 

 A boy is surrounded by ignorance and superstition and tied to a priest that is a bit grotesque. 

And a couple is trapped between the island and the continent, in a world inhabited by the dead--literally and figuratively.  Everybody's a bit dead in "The Dead." 

Though geography does limit Dubliners (they are separated from the continent by the English Channel), their cultural isolation is more important to Joyce.  Religion and tradition and lack of education paralyze the characters, and they allow themselves to be victimized. 

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