Besides taking place in Dublin, how are the short stories connected in Dubliners by James Joyce? Please give a few examples

Expert Answers info

mwestwood eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2006

write16,149 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

Having intended for Dubliners to be a tableau of the city and its people, both to themselves and to others, James Joyce connects his stories as the "stages of man." For, he has planned three stories each devoted to childhood, adolescence, mature life, public life, and married life. The final story, "The Dead," combines all these categories.

As a city, Dublin endured much decline by the early twentieth century, the historical setting of Joyce's work. This stagnation is reflected both in the status of the city as it dropped to the fifth in the United Kingdom ratings, although it was the second largest, and in the condition of its inhabitants, who were often poor and unemployed. Examples of this can be seen in the "ragged girls" and "ragged boys" of "An Encounter" and the "rough tribes from the cottages" in "Araby."  Because of the widespread poverty, those who were employed, even if in a servile position, clung to this grim work. For instance, in the story "The boarding House," Mr. Doran avoids the trap of marrying a woman he does not love lest he should lose his job in disgrace. Farrington in "Counterparts" gets violently drunk after he is made to offer an "abject apology" to his superior at work because he cannot afford to lose his job since so few are available.

With its stories that center on characterization, Dubliners focuses on the lower middle class, shopkeepers and tradesmen, clerks, bank officials, functionaries of one kind or another, and salesmen. Their homes are rented rooms and houses in unfashionable areas of the city. Some even exist on the edge of cruel poverty, such as the skivvy in "Two Gallants " and the caretaker's...

(The entire section contains 546 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Ask a Question