James Joyce’s ‘Eveline’: Stream of Consciousness as Failed Escapism College

James Joyce paints a grim picture of the sheltered life of 19th century women in Dublin, in his story Eveline. Part of a series, called Dubliners, Eveline is the account of a young woman torn between sentimental duty and the opportunity for escape. Eveline chooses neither; her life instead reflects a cyclical and unmoving position, one which characterizes the bleakness of Joyce’s comment on life in Dublin overall. Her struggle is articulated through a unique narrative that is comprised of third-person perspective and stream of consciousness technique. The point of view in Eveline is integral to the conveyance of the protagonist’s literal and mental conflict in regards to her obligation to stay and her fantasy for freedom. By entering the mind of Eveline, the narrative explores her thoughts and desires which are responsible for carrying the plot. Although the story lacks physical action, the importance lies in Eveline’s inability to move, her psychological and spiritual paralysis. The perspective coincides with three major figures: the window, the perpetual dust, and the memory of Eveline’s deceased mother. These figures represent the transcendent turmoil that ails the individual Eveline, as well as the larger context of the...

Join Now to View Premium Content

GradeSaver provides access to 1342 study guide PDFs and quizzes, 9995 literature essays, 2515 sample college application essays, 474 lesson plans, and ad-free surfing in this premium content, “Members Only” section of the site! Membership includes a 10% discount on all editing orders.

Join Now

Already a member? Log in