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Author James Joyce
Title Dubliners – Araby
Publisher Penguin

1. Features of the text

Genre
Short story

Theme(s)
Love, youth, value of things

Style
Realistic and descriptive

Narrator
Internal (The boy who’s in love with his friend’s sister)

Setting
Dublin

Characters and their interaction
-The Boy who narrates the story and is deeply in love with a girl is the protagonist
-The girl who is briefly described in one scene
-Mangan is the boy’s best friend
-The uncle of the boy, who forgets about the bazaar is a sort of antagonist

Summary
A boy is secretly in love with his best friend’s sister and he finally gets to talk to her. She tells him she can’t go to a bazaar called Araby because she is busy with a retreat in her convent, so he promises her to go there and buy something for her. His uncle forgets about this, so the boy arrives late to the bazaar, finding a stall where porcelain vases are sold. Not allowed to buy anything for his beloved, he goes back home sad and angry.

2. Personal Response

Relevant points:
a. Find an effective paragraph
pages 23-24 (The encounter)

b. Quote a remarkable thought, image or other in it

“Through one of the broken panes I heard the rain impinge upon the earth, the fine incessant needles of water playing in the sodden beds. Some distant lamp or lighted window gleamed below me. I was thankful that I could see so little. All my senses seemed to desire to veil themselves and, feeling that I was about to slip from them, I pressed the palms of my hands together until they trembled, murmuring: 'O love! O love!' many times.
At last she spoke to me. When she addressed the first words to me I was so confused that I did not know what to answer. She asked me was I going to Araby. I forgot whether I answered yes or no. It would be a splendid bazaar; she said she would love to go.”

Extract (identify and give a suitable title to a meaningful, self-contained extract):
Page
24 title The girl
“She held one of the spikes, bowing her head towards me. The light from the lamp opposite our door caught the white curve of her neck, lit up her hair that rested there and, falling, lit up the hand upon the railing. It fell over one side of her dress and caught the white border of a petticoat, just visible as she stood at ease. 'It's well for you,' she said. 'If I go,' I said, 'I will bring you something.' What innumerable follies laid waste my waking and sleeping thoughts after that evening! I wished to annihilate the tedious intervening days.”

3. The author

Historical and/or social background to be considered for a better understanding of the text
Dubliners contains a portrait of life in the Irish capital. Joyce focuses on children and adults who skirt the middle class. In Joyce’s collection the Irish could observe and study themselves. These portraits were probably the consequence of a middle class life beginning and, of course, of the fact of living in Dublin.

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