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Wednesday, February 3, 2010

James Joyce's "Araby": Why does the boy not buy anything at Araby?

After days of anticipation, the boy finally goes to Araby. But when he makes the trip to the bazaar, he returns empty-handed. He does not buy anything because of his lack of money, late arrival, and most notably, his general disappointment in the bazaar. After speaking with one of the vendors, he remarks, “The tone of her voice was not encouraging; she seemed to have spoken out of a sense of duty” (26). He feels that the vendor is more concerned with conversing with the two Englishmen, which is another reason for his disappoint in Araby because of Englands omnipresent involvement in Ireland and much of the rest of the world that is under the thumb of this great imperial power. He is expecting an authentic Arabian bazaar, as its name suggests, but instead he learns that it is just another event sponsored by England to demonstrate its dominance over the world. This disappointment is such a frustration to him that he is compelled to leave the bazaar empty-handed.

1 comment:

  1. On one level, I thought that the boy did not want to buy a gift. He may have felt that any gift he purchased would either disappoint or not generate the response he wanted. If he really wanted to make a purchase, he would have dealt with the previously occupied vendor and continued you search for the perfect gift in the one stand that was still open.