What literary devices could I use to trace the theme of paralysis throughout "Eveline"?

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David Morrison eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Joyce uses stream-of-consciousness to convey Eveline's mental paralysis. By entering into her troubled mind, we're able to follow her thought processes as she veers back and forth between deciding to remain with her family in Ireland or heading off to Argentina with her lover, Frank. Right up until the end of the story she's unable make a firm decision, her mental paralysis neatly encapsulated by the incredibly powerful pull that her selective memories of the past have upon her.

But in the end, stream-of-consciousness can only get us so far. Eveline's not really thinking of anything as she stands there on the quayside, rooted to the spot while Frank sails off into the distance for a new life on the other side of the world, a life which Eveline could've had if only she weren't so stuck in the past.

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mwestwood eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Certainly, religious allusions play a large part in the paralysis of Eveline, who is haunted by her promises to the Blessed Margaret Mary Alacoque, a beatified nun who introduced devotion to...

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