Essay about The Good Life and Eveline

Submitted By dchapz
Words: 1278
Pages: 6

Brandon Chaparro
Mrs. Tully


In James Joyce’s, “Eveline” the reader is introduced to a third person narrator telling the story of a difficult cross road that she comes upon. The young girl named Eveline tries to decide if she should stay at home and take care of the house like a responsible daughter or leave and start a new life with her lover. Eveline seems have had a pleasant childhood but after the death of her mother seems to have been living a brutal hardworking lifestyle. The two turns of the story was when she says, “But in her new home, in a distant unknown country, it would not be like that. Then she would be married-she, Eveline. People would treat her with respect then. She would not be treated as he mother had been.” This had said that she was ready to leave and start her journey of a new better life. Then later when she says, “All the seas of the world tumbled about her heart. He was drawing her into them: he would drown her. She griped with both hands at the iron railing.” With these words she realizes that she is not ready and backs out from the journey she thought she was sure to take. The story suggests that holding on to the past can prevent you from facing the future. The story can be summarized starting with her sitting at her window reminiscing the memories of her child hood. Eveline looks back at the fun she use to have with the children from the avenue. She remembers playing on that street where a field used to be until someone bought that land and built different houses there. Joyce lets the reader know that Eveline is not too happy about the change as she says, “The man from Belfast bought the field and built houses in it-not like their little brown houses but bright brick houses with shining roofs.” This shows that she has some discontent with change. Soon after the good times she had she realizes that most of her friends and family are dead or have left and realizes that everything changes. She looks around her home and wonders if she will ever see these familiar objects again with sorrow as you can tell when she says, “Perhaps she would never see again those familiar objects from which she had never dreamed of being divided.” Although she is dwelling on leaving behind the life she has always know she begins to see the benefits of starting a new life. She wonders how others will see her because she leaves. Will they slander her and think she was a fool. She comes to the conclusion that she would not burden herself the hard work both at home and her business nor make the mistakes of her mother and stay being belittled by others. Eveline goes on to say how after her mother’s death, due to illness, even her father started to get on her case. She show this turn when she say, “ 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 what he would do to her only for her dead mothers sake.” She even quotes, “Even now, though she was over nineteen, she sometimes felt herself in danger of her father’s violence.” At this point she tells the reader that her oldest brother Ernest is dead and her other brother is away. Her father doesn’t like to give her money and Harry helps as much as he can. She was taking care of the house and her father on her own. As Eveline looks back she feels that even though she had a hard life it wasn’t all that bad when she says, “It was a hard work-a hard life- but now that she was about to leave it she did not find it a wholly undesirable life.” She then goes about how she met her lover Frank. Eveline talks about how they met and how they would hang out. She says, “People knew that they were courting …” which obviously explains that they were the real deal. The important detail of the relationship was the disapproval from her father. He says, “I know these sailor chaps,” and after a quarrel the two of them had Eveline began to see Frank