Dubliners Questions and Answers
by James Joyce

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What is life like in Ireland for “Eveline” and the boy in “Araby”? Think about their class/social position. Think about how the people around them treat them. Think about their frustrations and their dreams and possible futures.

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Both Eveline and the young adolescent narrator of "Araby" come from lower middle class Dublin families. Both have little status within their family units. Both feel frustrated and suffocated by their lives, and both dream of escape to a better, more romantic existence.

Eveline works in a store where she feels undervalued and dissatisfied. Her mother is dead, and she turns over all of her wages to her father, who she lives in fear of. He shows her very little kindness or affection. The boy in "Araby" lives with his aunt and uncle. His uncle is a heavy drinker who pays little attention to the boy and is largely oblivious to his needs. The boy is dissatisfied with school and his dull, drab life in Dublin.

Eveline meets a sailor and makes plans to elope with him to Argentina, but at the last minute, her crippling indoctrination in religion and duty to her family, as well as a highly sentimentalized memory of a rare instance of her father's kindness, paralyzes her so that she turns away from...

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