Araby, By James Joyce

956 Words4 Pages
In the short story “Araby,” James Joyce uses religion to give a the story deeper meaning. The narrator of the story finds himself in a confusing love that is unrealistic and distorted. In “Araby,” Joyce uses an underlying theme of religion to portray a confusing admiration that is brought to a twisted end. Throughout “Araby” there is an underlying theme of religion. The boy himself lives with his uncle who is feared by the other kids on the street. If he is seen the kids “hid in the shadows” until he is “safely housed” (Joyce). The boy’s uncle represents a devil figure in the story. The uncle owns a house where a priest had died and where the air is “musty from having been long enclosed” (Joyce). The house has a lingering feeling of death like that of hell. Also, there is a wild garden behind the house in which there is an apple tree at the center. The apple tree represents the tree of knowledge of good and evil that is in the Garden of Eden. With this tree the devil tempted Adam and Eve, and in turn they were kicked out of the garden and forced into the harsh reality of the world. Just like how the uncle forgets about the boy wanting to go to the bazaar. He makes him late and forces the child to come to the harsh terms of his unrealistic love. However unlike the uncle, Mangan’s sister represents god, or the light in the story. When the children see her they come out of hiding and walk up to her steps. She is described as “waiting for [them]” with “her figure defined by

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