What is the main point of "Eveline" by James Joyce? What does Joyce do to make this point?

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As usual, it's difficult to pinpoint a single "point" in any work of literature. However, if one were to talk about the point of James Joyce's "Eveline ," then it would be most accurate to say that the major point of the story is to illustrate the oppression...

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As usual, it's difficult to pinpoint a single "point" in any work of literature. However, if one were to talk about the point of James Joyce's "Eveline," then it would be most accurate to say that the major point of the story is to illustrate the oppression of Irish women.

In Joyce's short story, Eveline is a young, working-class woman burdened with hardship. Her mother and one brother have passed away, and her father has fallen into alcoholism. Eveline works at a shop, but her money is largely devoted to supporting her family (or at least is given over to her father). Additionally, she has had to take care of her younger siblings now that her mother is gone. Though Eveline dearly wants to escape the tedium of her existence, the only way in which she can do so is to escape with a man, Frank, who wants to marry her and take her to Buenos Aires.

In analyzing Eveline's story, a few things become apparent. First, Joyce makes it clear that women are unfairly burdened with care of the family and household work. Furthermore, a woman must rely on a man to sustain herself. Indeed, Eveline's only hope of escaping her miserable life is to rely upon Frank, which effectively robs her of any agency. As such, if there's any point to "Eveline," it's that Irish women are unfairly oppressed and disadvantaged, and have little hope of advancing themselves or gaining independence.

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