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Love is an experience

Paper type: Essay
Pages: 5 (1064 words)
Categories: Emotion, Experience, Mind, Psychology
Downloads: 7
Views: 41

Love is an experience that many people have encountered. Some feel love through their imagination and others feel love through reality. Regardless, every human being that has walked on this Earth, at some point or another, has felt love. Even though they knew that the person they love or desire may never reciprocate the same feelings. In the short story, ‘Araby,’ James Joyce illustrates the kind of love that results in problems due to the imagination of being in love vs.

realistically being in love, ultimately developing a paradox of imagination vs reality through the use of figurative language and epiphany.

To begin with, James Joyce uses figurative language to demonstrate the fact that the boy is not really in love with this mystery girl, in turn, he is in love with the idea of her. For example, as Joyce writes, ‘ But my body was like a harp and her words and gestures were like fingers running upon the wires'(2).

Joyce uses a simile to signify the fact that this boy feels so enchanted by her even though he does not know her. He compares the love he thinks he feels which is the harp to the idea of her which can be her words and gestures. This develops a sense of obsession and imagination he craves regarding being with her. Joyce wants the readers to understand the rush one gets when they set their eyes on the one they think is their true love. An article written by Vanessa Smith Bennet explains, ‘Most of us are in love with the idea of being in love. We chase this illusive feeling, feeling the spark of the new and intensity of the passion·'( Bennett). James Joyce instills this continuous feeling of desire for Mangan’s sister in the narrator. Every time Mangan’s sister is caught in the eye of the narrator, he can’t help but feel intense feelings because he imagines what it must be like holding her in his arms and loving her as his girlfriend. In addition, Joyce asserts, ‘ I had never spoken to her, except for a few casual words, and yet her name was like a summons to all my foolish blood’ (1). The question that arises from Joyce’s assertion is how can one fall in love with someone when neither of them have spoken to each other? The answer is simple, Joyce uses another simile to bring to light the sense of imaginative love he begins to see and feel for her. The narrator knows deep down that without interacting with one another no real spark is going to occur, thus he concocts some imaginative ideas in his head resulting in the fact that he is in love with the idea of her and the idea of being with her.

Next, James Joyce uses epiphany as a literary device to allude to how the narrator faced reality and how he dealt with it when it came to the girl that never reciprocated the same feelings for him. For instance, Joyce says, ‘ Gazing up into the darkness I saw myself as a creature driven and derided by vanity; and my eyes burned with anguish and anger’ (5). Joyce uses epiphany to bring awareness to the fact that the narrator finally came to terms that the love that he thought he felt for this girl was nothing but just an imaginative feeling. He comes to terms with reality because he finally discerned that he never stood a chance with Mangan’s sister. This then caused the anger and anguish because there is nothing more heartbreaking than coming to terms with reality when one is so trapped in an imaginative state of mind. They are blind to see the difference between realistic love vs imaginative love. An article written by Paul Hudson claims, ‘Our wants and needs will often blend in with our realities, changing the way we perceive something or someone to be’ (Hudson). When one craves and wants something, they often look at that certain thing through an imaginative state never a realistic one. Joyce incorporates this exact concept into the narrator because the narrator doesn’t seem to grasp the realistic notion that no spark will ever occur between himself and Mangan’s sister. Due to that, it causes the narrator to change the way he perceives her because as the days go by he continues to only grow his enchantment and obsession with her which only pushes him farther away from reality. An article written by John Fileta discusses, ‘We exchange our realities for something that can never actually exist. We live for what could be, and end up missing what really is. And in the end we are led into disappointment, disillusionment, and destruction'(Fileta). Joyce presents this idea throughout the story because the narrator exchanges the fact that nothing will occur between him and Mangan’s sister for the idea of having her or loving her. He failed drastically to win Mangan’s sister and ignored the imaginative state of love he threw himself in and when reality struck upon him it led him to everlasting destruction and despair. Furthermore, Joyce states, ‘ I heard a voice call from one end of the gallery that the light was out. The upper part of the hall was now completely dark’ (5). From this quote, the readers can gather the fact that the boy has faced reality through the darkness and that the light that he continuously followed represents his imagination which eventually came to an end. Falling in love with someone often makes one blind to see things from a realistic view, like if they have a chance, will the other person reciprocate the same feelings, etc… When reality gets in the way of love, many decide to lean towards an imaginative love because they see themselves getting something they want even though it does not exist.

In conclusion, throughout ‘ Araby’ James Joyce uses figurative language and epiphany to create a conflict that involves the struggle between imaginative love vs realistic love. Love is complicated, however it also has enough power to make one blind and prevent them from seeing how much despair and destruction it can cause just by imagining something that may never happen, or exist. Sometimes love can heal all, but the majority of the time love can cause the most pain and lead to everlasting anguish.


Cite this essay

Love is an experience. (2019, Dec 07). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/love-is-an-experience-essay

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