Araby is a short story that deals with a young boy's life. The young boy is in love with his friend's sister and goes to the bizarre, Araby, in order to impress her because she cannot attend. In the end, the boy realizes that the bizarre is ordinary and all of his dreams and hopes about it have fallen short.
North Richmond Street presents us the first view of the boy's world. The street is "blind"; the houses are "imperturbable" in the "quiet," the "cold," the "dark muddy lanes" and "dark dripping gardens." Anyone who is not spiritually ...view middle of the document...
The world of blindness extends from a general view of the street and its resident to the boy's personal relation-ships. It is not a generation gap but a gap in the spirit. It results in the uncle's failure to arrive home in time for the boy to go to the bazaar while it is still open. The uncle has no doubt been to the local pub, indifferent to the boy's anguish and impatience. However, the boy waits well into the evening in the "imperturbable" house with its musty smell and old, useless objects that fill the rooms. The house, like the aunt and uncle, and like the entire neighborhood, reflects people who are well-intentioned but narrow in their views and blind to higher values (even the street lamps lift a "feeble" light to the sky). We can feel an atmosphere filled with stagnation and isolation.
What’s more, "Araby" is a story of first love; even more, it is a portrait of a world that defies the ideal and the dream. The boy's final disappointment occurs as a result of his awakening to the world around him. The tawdry superficiality of the bazaar, which in his mind had been an "Oriental enchantment," strips away his blindness and leaves him alone with the realization that life and love differ from the dream. Realizing this, the boy takes his first step into adulthood.