Epiphanies in James Joyce’s “Dubliners”

Epiphanies in James Joyce’s “Dubliners”

Epiphanies in Edibleness Edibleness presents various different stories with unique characters that often share similar experiences or transformations. An epiphany or sudden realization is a common occurrence in these stories. In “After the Race” , “An Encounter” and “Beeline” each main character experiences an epiphany. “An Encounter” is about a boy who decides to skip school with his friends one day. The boys friends played Cowboys and Indians often and this caused a hunger for adventure in the boys mind.

The boy became convinced that exciting things only happen to those who go exploring about so he decided to ditch school one day and go into town. There the boy meets an old man and he is embarrassed of his friend and doesn’t want to seem foolish. He appears well educated and like a sharp boy to the reader. The reader almost experiences an epiphany along with the boy because up until now the reader wasn’t fully aware of the boys intelligence. The boy realized he didn’t even like Mahoney, the friend he was running off with. The Juvenile spirit of him actually annoyed the boy.

He didn’t need to act cool or play hooky or read comics. He enjoyed earning, acting mature, and being a respectable boy and it took talking to this old man for him to realize that. “Beeline” relates the story of a woman who is planning to run off with her fianceГ©. The story reads as if she has a tough home life especially since her mother died. For the first part of the story she ponders her decision wondering if she is making the right choice. She constantly is putting the promise she made to her mother in consideration. Her mother is her only reason of thinking of staying.

She knows that staying involves a lot more work less respect a lot of duty ND taking care of her abusive father. The two people she cared about most in her family are already gone. In a weird sense having her mother gone is what is holding her back. She told her mom that she would make sure her father is being taken care of. She also has a bit of nostalgia for this kind of living. She admired her mother and thinks that if it was good enough for her mother than she should live the same way. Overall she decides the life is too tough and that she should elope with her lover. The reader is lead to believe she has every intention of doing so.

She gets on the docks dead to run away but at the very last minute she refuses to go in a sudden realization. This comes to as a shock to the reader and it can only be assumed that she realized she had to fulfill her promise. The epiphany in “Beeline” was a different because she was stuck on a decision and couldn’t make up her mind. So she was searching for this realization whereas the boy in An Encounter wasn’t expecting to discover that he wasn’t who he was pretending to be. Although she was hoping for the decision to be made the reader can note that it probably wasn’t what she was expecting and it didn’t come when she expected it to.

In “After the Race” the main character Jimmy is trying to fit in with the elite and rich crowd. He does this by spending money as if he has more than he actually does, gambling, and attending the race. Jimmy goes to a hotel with his “friends” and then proceeds to go to a yacht. The story frequently refers to Jimmy’s father and how he worked so hard to get Jimmy and himself to fit into this crowd. Jimmy plays cards on the yacht and falls deep into EOT out doesn’t stop. A muleteer AT alcohol Ana Ignorance over rule Nils reasoning. He is aware that he can’t afford to be partying like he is but decides that he will worry bout that problem tomorrow.

At the end of the story it is announced that its daybreak. Joyce constructed the end of the story in such a way that the reader experiences the epiphany with Jimmy. One might experience frustration as Jimmy gambles away money he doesn’t have, but might understand the fool’s yearn to have fun and put off his worries until tomorrow. At the end of the story when tonight’s fun has made an abrupt and quick transition into the next mornings troubles Jimmy and the reader realize the drunken mistake. Jimmy is in a very similar situation that the boy in “An Encounter” was in.

The boy wanted to be a troublemaker and have no regard for learning. They both experience a societal calling. Its not socially acceptable interested in one’s education or to stay at home with a book rather than drinking and gambling. Both of these characters try to reach this social status until at the end come upon a sudden realization that renders that achievement either impossible or undesirable. Beeline and Jimmy are in almost entirely opposite situations. Beeline is attempting to do what is best for herself. She plans to elope with her loving fianceГ© leaving behind a troubled home life.

At the end of the story, however, she is unable to go through with it making the decision that would least benefit herself. In “After the Race” Jimmy makes poor decision throughout the story but the reader is led to believe that his epiphany will lead him to lead a more reasonable life in the future. All three characters realize something about themselves. This is a little ironic because one would assume that when an epiphany is realized it might be of some great truth to life. It seems odd yet a little more realistic that these particular Edibleness have reached a point of true self-discovery in these epiphanies.