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Paralysis in Dubliners Essay

Assignment id 1009708
Discipline Biology
Assignment type Essay
Words 2996
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In his letters, Joyce himself has said that Dubliners was meant "to betray the soul of the hemiplegia or paralysis which many consider that a city" (55). The paralysis that he had been talking about is the paralysis of action. The figures in Dubliners exemplify paralysis of action in their inability to escape their lives. In another of Joyce's writings, '' A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, Joyce writes of Ireland: "If the spirit of a man is born in this country there are nets flung at it to hold it back from flight. You speak to me of nationality, speech, faith. I shall attempt to fly by those nets" (Joyce 238). The personalities of Dubliners face similar nets that prevent them from escaping their own lives. Unfortunately, their efforts to "fly by those nets" are not necessarily present; the figures frequently do not try and break from their own lives (like in "Clay"). In the event they do attempt to violate their paralysis, the characters normally neglect, or at least is the case for the time before and throughout the story which the reader observes. The causes of this persistent paralysis differ between the characters: a few are paralyzed with lack of motivation or dread, others by other or familial bonds; by religion, addictions, by simple lack of resources, or truths or misinterpretations of events or words. Most those characters from the stories covered in course share fear or lack of will as the cause for their being paralyzed in their lives. To provide a good example, Chandler from "A Little Cloud" wants to break free of their dull life to be a writer and explore the world. But he lacks confidence in himself. "Shyness had held him back," in all aspects of his life, from reading poetry to his spouse to enter...

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