Looking into Eveline which written by James Joyce, I have experienced Evelines inside world, witnessed her dream to leave home. This paper is going to focus on the analyses of Eveline and her dream.
She was tired; she sat at the window watching the evening invade the avenue. She was to think, to recall something. Once upon a time, the children of the avenue used to play together in the fieldthe Devines, the Waters, the Dunns, little Keogh the cripple, she and her brothers and sisters. As the development of industry, a man from Belfast bought the field and built house in itno like their little brown houses but bright brick houses with shining roofs. From then on, she lost her happy childhood.
She led a hard family life: she has to take care of the whole family and look after the young brother and sister after mothers death. Fathers bad temper and the people around her made feel the life undesirable. Now everything changes. She was going to go away like others, to leave her home. Frank is one of the most important reasons to help Eveline determined to leave home. He was a sailor, very kind, manly, open-hearted. At the beginning of the story, Eveline has decided that she would go away with him by the night-boat to Buenos Ayres where he had a home waiting for her. Escape! She must escape! Frank would save her. He would give her life, perhaps love, too. Why should she be unhappy? She had a right to happiness. To her, Frank was a foreign sailor means new experience, new life. There is an obviously comparison to her dull life. Old cretonne curtains, broken harmonium, yellowing colored photograph and the dust which never been remove thoroughlyall these things were suffocating. But Frank, like the sunshine to cheer up Eveline. He used to meet her outside the stores every evening and see her home. He took her to see The Bohemian Girl and he had tales of distant countries. He stands a kind of new life, new power which Eveline was looking for. To her, Frank is the only person to save her, help her out of the trap. She dreamed to go away with Frank to a distant country, she would be married and people there would treat her with respect as her mother had been. She wants to be loved.
As Eveline mused the pitiful vision of her mothers life laid its spell on the very quick of her beingthat life of commonplace sacrifices closing in final craziness. Once the death of her mother came out in her mind, she trembled, stood in a sudden impulse of terror. There was only an idea came to hershe must escape, with Frank, immediately.
However, Eveline did not seize the opportunity which leads to freedom and new life finally. At the last moment, she wavered, scared. The boat takes Frank away, leaved Eveline with a broken dream of leave home.
People have said pretty much on the reason that Evelines dream of run away which end with broken. However, each reader has his own Hamlet that I am going to find out the motive she want to leave and the reason she stay.
She remembers the last night of her mothers illness; remember her promise to her mother, her promise to keep the home together as long as she could. Thinking of her determination to run away, the choice between obey or disobey the promise she made, she feel distress. Even though she strengthen her power to not to follow her mothers step to a tragedy destination, she cannot refuse the moral reality she familiar with. In her home anyway she had shelter and food; she had those whom she had known all her life about her. Shes content with things as they are and shes satisfied with her life style made her cannot get out of the trap.
In addition, as a nineteen years old girl, Eveline has less life experience, her understanding to life and love not that deep. And her love towards Frank was not sincere enough. First of all it had been an excitement for her to have a fellow and then she had begun to like him. But she never give his sincerely love more positive response. She felt that Frank would save her, give her life and love. She took all these for grand which means that Eveline do not understanding what love is, and do not know how accept love. In her eyes, Frank was no more than a tool to help her to run away. She was pathetic in love relationship. On the quay, when the boat blew a long mournful whistle into the mist, she eyes gave him no sign of love or farewell or recognition. The reason why she act like that is obviously.
The essential reason she failed to run away is lay on herself, her pusillanimous personality, lack of courage and power to break the humdrum social reality to pursue the freedom. She sinks into the meaningless reality to live the same life as before. And also her coward kept her in the same place. The night-boat would take her sail to the free new life, and its also would be an adventure. The journey to the new life would be difficult and danger, even the threaten come from death; she knows that she lack of courage and power to handle these things. When she caught a glimpse of the black mass of the boat, she regarded as a sign of unlucky. Her pusillanimous personality killed her dream to pursue a new life. What is waiting for her is the dull and dark life which she familiar with.
Evelines dream ends with failure. And also a tragedy for the figures that failed to pursue the new life in that society. Whats more, Evelines broken dream shows us that people should not sink into the meaningless reality, living with the benumbed mental state. Instead, people should going to revivify themselves, wake up themselves, wake up their ethos, to explore, pursue the freedom and new life.