Eveline

Sits at the window, watching the avenue. She thinks of her family. She and her siblings are now grown up, and her mother is dead. Eveline is nineteen years old, and she is planning to leave Ireland forever. She works very hard, at a store and also at home, where she cares for her old father. She won't miss her job in the store. She has mixed feelings about her father. He can be cruel, and though he doesn't beat her, he often threatens her with violence. She is going to leave Ireland for good with a sailor named Frank. He has a home in Buenos Ayres. Frank treats her respectfully and with great tenderness. Her father dislikes him. Still,she loves her father and regrets the idea of leaving him in his old age. She remembers her mother's death, when she promised her mother to keep the home together as long as she could. Her mother lived a life "of commonplace sacrifices closing in final craziness". The fear of that memory strengthens the resolve in Eveline to leave. But at the station, with the boat ready to leave, she is paralyzed. She cannot go; the world is too frightening. "All the seas of the world tumbled about her heart. Frank was drawing her into them: he would drown her". Frank calls to her, trying to get her to board with the rush of people. She merely stares at him as if he is a stranger. The weight of poverty and family responsibilities bear down on this young woman heavily; her financial situation is far worse than that of the three boy narrators of the previous stories. She is trapped in an ugly situation, responsible for her siblings and the aging father who abuses her. Paralysis is a common theme in Dubliners, and poor Eveline finds herself unable to move forward. She lacks the courage and strength to make that leap that will free her of her oppressive situation. She's too scared to leave Ireland, and sees her lover as a possible source of danger

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