Wednesday, November 17, 2010

"Evilene" by James Joyce

1. Analyze the first brief paragraph in detail. How does it help to introduce the story's theme? Why does the narrator use the unexpected word "invade" in the first sentence? Why is the second sentence written in passive voice?

This opening paragraph helps introduce the story's theme because it emphasizes the character's lack of control in her own life. When she describes the evening as "invading" the avenue, I got the sense that she did not like its presence. However, like so many other things in her life, she had no control of the time of day. This was further accentuated in the next few sentences written in passive voice. Because passive voice utilizes verbs of being, it was merely stating conditions she felt or observed. In this way, it only heightened the idea that she had no direction in her life. Eveline lived in a household where she was unappreciated and taken advantage of. Her father sounded like a somewhat cruel man, and she was only spared from his physical abuse due to the fact that she was a woman. For these reasons, I would also classify Eveline as a sympathetic character.

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