James Joyce’s Araby tells the story of a young boy who lives in North Dublin at the beginning of the twentieth century. Araby is the boys’ name for Arbour Hill, a cemetery near his home and one that Mother Francis (the boy’s teacher) claims has “beautiful” trees and flowers. The young unnamed narrator meets Mangan’s sister early in the story and is infatuated with her, but he can’t seem to find a way to talk to her.
The Arbour Hill Martyr’s Festival comes around and Mangan’s sister goes to it; the narrator tries desperately to go as well, but his mother forbids him because it is not a Catholic holiday (he gets sick before she changes her mind). When it finally does come, however, the young boy finds Araby to be disappointing: all of its exotic products are too expensive for him—and then he learns that Mangan’s sister has already left for Araby. Araby turns out not to be as special as everyone said it was.
Araby is a short story by James Joyce. It was published in his book Dubliners and tells the tale of young boy who falls in love with the girl next door, but their encounter is interrupted. Araby can be read as a parable for religious feeling and spiritual transcendence: it begins with the epiphany of a child which reveals to him that life holds infinite possibilities while at the same time possessing certain limits beyond which our wisher cannot pass. Araby takes place within an unnamed city, probably Dublin, during one summer.
The narrator describes himself as being about twelve or thirteen years old when he has an awakening while listening to a melancholy song sung by an Arab street vendor whom he passes on his way to school every day. The song symbolizes a place Araby, which the narrator has never been to but where he nevertheless places his dreams and desires. One evening, the story culminates in a visit to Araby at a bazaar for eastern goods that is held once a year where the narrator glimpses the girl who lives next door from afar. Araby thus becomes a backdrop for their encounter that ends abruptly when she suddenly disappears from view.
Araby begins with an epiphanic moment by young boy about what true love means: The verses sounded sweet to me as I walked along the street, and I wondered why they had so little appeal for others . . . The brief ardour which consumed me as I sat scribbling verse in a secretaire [sic] . . . was roused by certain high notes which made me imagine that I had been the inspirer of unuttered poems in a hearts. Araby, Dubliners Araby is written in third person narrative and begins with the narrator speaking about his discovery of love for his neighbor.
Araby has many themes such as epiphany, mysticism, desire and disappointment. Araby also describes how we search for something we want but will never find it until we stop searching and learn to provide our own satisfaction: I desired Araby untoldly [sic], and the only thing that remotely stirred me to possess it was the fact that my father’s name was Cone . Araby is an unknown place for the character in Araby, but its name Araby sounded so beautiful to him that he would day dream about Araby every time he heard it.
Araby tells of the romantic experiences of a 12-year-old boy, Mangan’s sister, and an unnamed girl who lives near their neighborhood. The writing style is similar to Joycean stream of consciousness writing. One evening at about seven o’clock, the young narrator escapes from his bedroom, where he had been sent as punishment for some misbehavior. He wanders through parts of Dublin until he finds himself outside the house of Mangan’s sister (he is thinking about her).
On this occasion she is not home alone but with a friend—a neighbor though apparently older than both she and the narrator—whom she has invited to tea. The narrator spends some time listening through the window to their conversation, then leaves for home. In many ways Araby is considered a coming of age story. Araby deals with serious issues, such as loss of innocence and growing up in general. Araby also deals with the interactions between people during childhood; however this story does not have any major conflict like most other stories do.
The setting in Araby took place at night when the young protagonist escapes from his bedroom where he had been sent as punishment for misbehavior with Mangan’s sister (he is thinking about her). On this occasion she is not home alone but has invited a neighbor who appears older than both she and the narrator—whom he overhears talking through a window. The Araby short story takes place in Dublin, Ireland and the Araby Festival is discussed throughout the story. This short story deals with serious issues such as loss of innocence and growing up.
Araby also deals with relationships between characters during childhood; however there was no major conflict present in Araby like other stories have. Araby takes place at night when the young protagonist escapes from his bedroom where he had been sent as punishment for misbehavior with Mangan’s sister (he is thinking about her). On this occasion she is not home alone but has invited a neighbor who appears older than both she and the narrator—whom he overhears talking through a window while hiding outside their house.
Araby’s setting takes place in Araby, Dublin, Ireland and Araby is discussed throughout the story. The Araby Festival itself has a significance to the overall plot of Araby by James Joyce. The Araby short story opens with a quote from The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam: “Come, fill the Cup, and in the fire of Spring Your Winter-garment of Repentance fling: The Bird of Time has but a little way To fly—and Lo! the Bird is on the Wing. ” The young protagonist listens through Mangan’s sister’s window as she dances around her living room with their neighbor who had earlier visited after being invited for some tea.
The Aravy Festival reference by James Joyce shows that the Araby Festival is taking place soon and it also shows that Araby is a festival not to be missed (or Araby would be incomplete). The Araby Festival has significance because it takes place at the end of Araby and ties up loose ends. The Araby short story closes with the neighbor’s revelation that Mangan’s sister had accepted his proposal of marriage, as well as having proposed earlier himself; thus the Araby Festival references symbolize the neighbor as a suitor for Mangan’s sister.
The Araby short story closes with “Mangan’s sister was dressed in white” which signifies that she is engaged to her suitor. After Araby alludes that they are both engaged then leaves readers with no question about Araby’s ending. Araby by James Joyce is a short story that leaves readers with no question about Araby’s ending without having to be spelled out for it. Araby closes once the Araby Festival reference is made at the end of Araby and makes a direct connection between Araby and the Araby Festival.