A Guided Epiphany
In “Eveline,” the main character, Eveline, lives a terrible life with a stern father, a miserable occupation, and a dreary home. When she is offered the chance to leave her abysmal life and start a new one with her lover Frank, she rejects this proposition and remains in Ireland. Immediately this presents the reader with a paradox. Why did Eveline stay? Wasn’t her life terrible? It is not until the reader digs a little deeper into “Eveline” does the paradox solve itself. Joyce uses various literary techniques to help the reader understand why Eveline did not leave with Frank.
In order to solve Eveline’s paradox, Joyce employs sentence structure to elaborate how important the father and Frank are to Eveline. The father is given much longer sentences than any of the other characters, such as “He said she used to squander the money, that she had no head, that he wasn 't going to give her his hard-earned money to throw about the streets, and much more, for he was usually fairly bad on Saturday night.” (Joyce 65-68), and “When they were growing up he had never gone for her like he used to go for Harry and Ernest, because she was a girl; but latterly he had begun to threaten her and say 3 what he would do to her only for her dead mother 's sake. “ (55-58) contain forty words and forty eight words each respectfully. Frank, when he is first introduced, is also given slightly longer sentences. The third sentence in Frank’s introduction, “She was to go away with