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The Early Twentieth Century Irish Boy: A Paradox in Joyce’s “Araby”

By Isabelle Titcomb, IV Form

 

The Early Twentieth Century Irish Boy: A Paradox in Joyce’s “Araby”

Upon being asked “who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” Jesus replied, “truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 18:1-3). Therefore, when a devout child becomes a young adult, he may find that he is no longer welcomed into the kingdom. Such a realization brings confusion and agonizing repression. “Araby” by James Joyce draws upon this notion through the telling of the coming-of-age story of a sheltered Irish Catholic schoolboy harrowed by newfound desire. (more…)