The Theme of Escape in James Joyce’s Dubliners Essay

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The Theme of Escape in James Joyce’s Dubliners

In James Joyce’s Dubliners, the theme of escape tends to be a trend when characters are faced with critical decisions. Joyce’s novel presents a bleak and dark view of Ireland; his intentions by writing this novel are to illustrate people’s reasons to flee Ireland. In the stories “Eveline, “Counterparts”, and the “Dead”, characters are faced with autonomous decisions that shape their lives. This forlorn world casts a gloomy shadow over the characters of these stories. These stories are connected by their similar portrayal of Ireland. They clearly represent Joyce’s views on people’s discontent with Ireland.

In the story “Eveline”, Joyce’s main character
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He belittles his daughter and is unappreciative to her contributions to the family. This is the main reasoning behind Eveline’s desire to escape her life and Ireland. Eveline states, “The promise to her mother, her promise to keep the home together as long as she could” (32, 33). She unselfishly chooses her priorities and commitments over her own happiness and future.

In the story “Counterparts”, the main character Farrington is irresponsibly leading his life to disaster. Farrington is a careless employee who neglects his work and disrespectful towards his supervisors. “Mr. Alleyne began a tirade of abuse, saying that two letters were missing” (86,87). Farrington is creating unnecessary stress in his life; his relationship with his family is not to promising. Joyce states, “Now, you’ll let the fire out the next time! said the man, striking at him viciously with a stick” (94). He is abusive towards his son and desires relations with other women. Farrington is constantly creating an unpleasing life for himself; he has made the decision to be irresponsible in all aspects of his life and has now sealed his own fate.

Farrington feels that he can escape his life by drinking. He believes that he can solve his problems in this matter. Throughout the story he concentrates most of his mind and efforts on becoming inebriated. Joyce states, “The man recognized that sensation and felt that he must
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