What is the significance of time and memory in "Araby"?

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kwoo1213 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The time in the story is important, especially as it relates to the boy's life. He is a young boy, perhaps nearing the age of 13 or 14, and has developed his first crush (on his friend Mangan's sister) and he is smitten and obsessed.  He can think of nothing else but this young girl and neglects almost everything else in his life.  This age is an impressionable one and most of us can relate to our first serious crush.  It is unforgettable. 

Also, the young boy has lost his grip on reality.  He has forgotten that the obsession with this young girl that he has is slowly eroding his life.  He is living in an unrealistic world by being obsessed with his crush.  When he goes to the bazaar to purchase the gift for his crush, he suddenly realizes that he has been very foolish and has wasted much of his time.  It is as if his memory returns (of his responsibilities and the things he has neglected to do because of his crush) to him.  Of course, this affects him greatly because at the end of the story, his eyes are stung with tears.

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