Upon first glance, the differences between James Joyce “Araby” and Countee Cullen “Incident” seem very clear. Joyce wrote a short story with a gloomy and depressing tone. The time and setting of short story “Araby” is in Dublin, Ireland during the 19th century. Cullen wrote a poem with a jaunty and lighthearted tone for the most part. Cullen “Incident” has a setting and time in Baltimore, Maryland during the 1920s. However, they both ironically wrote using the same point of view and theme, the loss of innocence. Who knew two very different authors from two different ways of life and writing styles could essentially write about the same topic.
Although the main character in the short story "Araby" and the speaker in the poem "Incident" both experience a loss of innocence the events leading up to their loss is not similar. The character in the short story "Araby" lost his innocence by developing a crush on a girl not knowing the feelings and attractions that came with having a crush on someone. The unnamed narrator in the short story developed a crush on his friend Mangan 's sister. The narrator 's friend and crush both live across the street from him. The narrator is being raised by his aunt and uncle who are both also unnamed. The narrator is so obsessed with the girl that he watches her stealthily everyday waiting for her to leave in the mornings so that he can follow her on part of his way to school. The narrator admits that he "Had never spoken to her, except for a few