The short story is a highly complex form of literary art , presenting a single segment of life with its brevity and concentration. In his attempt to communicate an essential aesthetic vision, James Joyce creates a special style of short story that became almost like an objective correlative of the reality experienced by him. In Araby, as in other stories in Dubliners, he presents a captured frame portraying the decadence of vitality, a degeneration characterizing the modern world of spiritual paralysis. At the same time his presentation conforms to the accepted codes of typical story-telling technique.
The story, about a young boy, different and hence alienated from the insensitive humanity surrounding him, is a perfect representation of the author’s own sense of futility. The narrator’s intense desire to attend the fete “Araby” and his frustration after visiting it at the dead hours, reveal the inner psychological workings of his mind. The narrator, portrayed in the story is not merely a representative of his own generation but also symbolic of man’s eternal search for the ideal. (more…)