Essay about Deception and Narrator

Submitted By diddlybob2496
Words: 1954
Pages: 8

Leonardo Di Vinci once said, “The greatest decision men suffer is from their own decisions.” It is easier to be deceived by oneself rather than by someone else. As hypocritical as the quote may sound, it is actually true. It may be hard to believe but, to humans, deception comes naturally because humans do not know how to be unbiased. And, because of this deception, humans are able to learn the absolutes of life. This cycle of deceiving and learning the absolutes of life repeatedly occurs throughout the three stages of life- childhood, young adulthood, and maturity. James Joyce, in “Araby”, “The Boarding House”, and “A Painful Case”, shows how deception is part of human nature, and how epiphanies can help individuals realize the absolutes in life.
In “Araby”, James Joyce uses the narrator to portray how deception is part of human nature. Whether one deceives someone else or oneself, deception is inevitable. In “Araby” the narrator deceives himself. The narrator, who is a child, mistakenly falls in love with a woman. And, the narrator doesn’t just ‘fall in love’ but, the narrator falls so hard that he acts as if Mangan’s sister is like an idol to worship. Because of this infatuation that the narrator has toward Mangan’s sister, the narrator has trouble focusing on his daily activities. In fact, the narrator said “I could not call my wandering thoughts together. I had hardly any patience with the serious work of life which..... stood between me and my desires.” (pg.17). But soon the narrator realizes that he has been deceiving himself when he arrives at the bazaar. Upon arriving at the bazaar, the narrator realizes that his idea of having a relationship with Mangan’s sister is only a mere fantasy. The narrator realizes this when he comes into contact with another older women who does not pay him any attention or give him any respect. He soon sees that the only reason the woman at the stall was talking to him was because she wanted business. In fact, the narrator says, “The tone of her voice was not encouraging; she seemed to have spoken to me out of a sense of duty” (pg. 19). The narrator soon related this scenario to the one with Mangan’s sister and comes to a conclusion that Mangan’s sister was using him to get a present; that was the reason why she has sent him to the bazaar- so the she could get a present. Thus, as a child, the narrator deceived himself by believing in having a relationship with a woman older than him. Had he not deceived himself, he would not have gone to the bazaar with high hopes and left with frustration and a broken heart.
In “Araby”, the narrator, after experiencing an epiphany, comes to a realization that love can be deceiving and mesmerizing at the same time. The narrator, who fell in love with Mangan’s sister, is completely blinded by love. In fact, he says, “My body was like a harp and her words and gestures were like fingers running upon the wires” (pg. 16) This quote shows how mesmerized the narrator actually was. Through this quote, one can tell that Mangan’s sister had complete control over the narrator, who is mesmerized by Mangan’s sister, because Mangan’s sister is described as the thing that is playing the narrator, who is portrayed as the harp or a mere instrument. This infatuation that the narrator carried for Mangan’s sister led the narrator to the bazaar. The narrator, hoping to please his love with a present, encounters a woman who treats him as an ordinary person. Perplexed, the narrator waits around to see if the lady is willing to carry a conversation with him, but unfortunately he was turned down. In fact, he confessed, “I lingered before her stall, though I knew my stay was useless, to make my interest in her wares seem the more real” (pg. 19). In this quote, the narrator comes to a conclusion that love is deceiving because he realizes that he has no chance with a woman older than him. He concludes that waiting for the merchant to carry a conversation is useless and hoping…