Reading Response To Araby By James Joyce

Araby is a short story by James Joyce which is about a young boy in Ireland who is obsessed with the girl living across the street When the young girl mentions how badly she wants to attend a certain bazaar, he sees an opportunity to win her heart by attending the bazaar himself and bringing her back a gift.

At first, I was actually not interested on reading this story especially when I saw how he tackled about his life and experiences. I actually thought it was a horror short story because of the part when he said that a priest died in the house before they moved in. My first impression was it was about death, it was too serious and an honestly a bit boring. But as I have read the passage more and more, I began to understand what was happening in the story and I actually liked the story.

I like how the author showed a relatable scene where a young boy has a crush on a girl and offers to buy her a gift in order to win her. It is a very cute scene which reminded me of my childhood. I think that the story would be better if the author focused on describing how the boy had a crush on the girl and he was too shy to approach her and gave the boy some time to actually regain what happened. It was honestly a cliffhanger because we will never know what happened after the boy failed to buy her a gift.

The approaches that I have seen in this short story, was first the Sociological Approach. Because in this short story, the social life of the boy has been tackled especially in the part where it was introduced that he had a crush on his friend’s sister. It showed his relationship to the girl and also his friend in the story which is Mangan.

The second approach that I have noticed was the Historical Approach, because in the first part of the story it tackled his past life where he can remember that a priest died in their house before they moved in and he also recalls how he and his friend Mangan would run through the back lanes of the houses and hide in the shadows when they reached the street again, hoping to avoid people in the neighborhood, particularly the boy’s uncle or the sister of his friend.

And the last approach that I haved noticed was Formalism because it indeed taught me a moral lesson. It shows that Instead of reaffirming his love or realizing that he does not need gifts to express his feelings for Mangan’s sister, the boy just simply gives up. He seems to interpret his arrival at the bazaar as it fades into darkness as a sign that his relationship with Mangan’s sister will also remain just a wishful idea and that his infatuation was as misguided as his fantasies about the bazaar which is of course was wrong. He didn’t need material things to show his feelings for the girl and that’s really important nowadays. You always need to think about the genuine things that money can’t buy.

31 October 2020
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