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Gabriel of the Modern Wasteland in The Dead - Essay Example

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The modern wasteland in James Joyce’s longest finale to the ‘Dubliners’, ‘The Dead’, as manifested in the short story, similar to the depiction given through T.S. Eliot’s poem, symbolizes ‘death in life’ which eventually seeks the hope of salvation…
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Gabriel of the Modern Wasteland in The Dead
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"Gabriel of the Modern Wasteland in The Dead"

Download file to see previous pages That is, ‘death’ of the good old civilization in the ‘life’ of spiritual, psychological, and moral decay of the present one which chiefly resembles the life of Gabriel Conroy whose insecure character is made to acquire possible resolve in self-discovery after learning about the untold past of his wife Gretta.
Being an inhabitant of the wasteland, along with its circumstances of desolation or demise of fertile sensibility and wisdom, Gabriel portrays the idea of what Eliot claims in ‘The Waste Land’ on uttering “I could not Speak, and my eyes failed, I was neither Living nor dead, and I knew nothing, Looking into the heart of light, the silence.” Equivalently, when ‘The Dead’ shares in agreement stating that ‘Gabriel’s eyes, irritated by the floor which glittered with beeswax’, altogether it becomes representative of the citizens of Dublin who, due to gradual corruption of scrupulous ways of living, have unconsciously neglected the use of indispensable senses other than that of sight. With the figurative lack of these other senses Gabriel, like the rest of the Dubliners at the time, relies upon the ‘eye’ alone for understanding and judgment of matters.
During the annual dance and dinner party of the Morkan sisters, probably held in the Feast of the Epiphany, Gabriel enters a scene that all the more underscores his personal conflicts through sick humors thrown at him and his attempt to compensate for the awkwardness of the situation. In his scheming endeavor to drive discomfort away, Gabriel makes fun of Lily, the maid who takes offense on his inquisition regarding her love life prospects, and resumes talk with colleague and dancing partner Molly Ivors in order to express his acclaim for Irish virtues and pride toward conventions. Instead of healthy consequences, however, Conroy happens to have overly addressed idealism in a fashion that appears unnecessarily cunning and deprived of real nationalistic sense and familiarity, prompting Ivors to walk out of the picture. These instances readily justify an inference that even on trying to cope with his struggles forward as such, the amount of pretentions attached to Gabriel’s character at this stage can never attain for him genuine triumph over the losses incurred by the former acts. The resulting absence of mutual respect, no matter how unintentional, attests to the major deficiency of Conroy as he fails to convey the truth in himself and observe the appropriate mode of communication. Not only does such crises render close relations accumulate risks but unknowing Gretta’s life prior to their union also implies a profound effect of failure in communication. When he is about to leave the party, Gabriel finds his wife in a seemingly nostalgic look or state of trance which he mistakes for a romantic lure. Later moments of intimate conversation reveal that Gretta has been enthralled by the music played as Bartell D’Arcy sings ‘The Lass of Aughrim’ which reminds her of once being a Galway girl in love with a boy named Michael Furey. This then enables Gabriel to commence his in-depth rather contemplative exploration of his own traits including the substance of his perceptions regarding his wife and the past, as well as of the living and the dead. At the end of the story, the Dublin labyrinth of the ‘eye’ is likely subjected to transformation while Gabriel realizes how death manages to occur in his well-being. His period of emotional recollections and random yet significant thoughts suggests an epiphany of sudden enlightenment or radiance that has never been present in plain view of things. It is a point at which Conroy engages into his identity for the first ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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This essay was always my weak point. I could never finish it well. Still, after I found this precise essay, I understood how it should be done. So, I performed my research afterward and completed the essay in several hours, instead of months as it was previously.
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