Araby Short Summary
“Araby” by author James Joyce, is a short story that was published as part of the collection called “The Dubliners” in the year 1914. It is narrated in the first person by an unnamed narrator. The story is about a boy, the narrator who likes one of the girls in the neighborhood.
Quick Overview of the Plot
The narrator lives in the street named Dublin with his aunt and uncle. He has a friend called Mangan, who lives across the street from the narrator’s house. Mangan’s sister is the girl whom the narrator falls for. However, he is shy and just secretly looks at her and follows her to school from time to time.
One day, the girl talks to him, asking him whether he will go to a bazaar called Araby. She explains she is unable to go due to school obligations on the weekend. The narrator has the urge to impress her and steps up, claiming he will go and even bring back a gift for her.
The narrator loses concentration in his school as he awaits the day. He thinks about her all the time.
On the morning of the day, the narrator reminds his uncle to get back early so he could give him some pocket money for the bazaar. The boy is anxious all day and even forfeits playtime to stay indoors. The uncle becomes late and even exceeds it, arriving at 9.00 in the evening. The uncle does not care; he messed with the boy’s plans.
The aunt vouches for the boy to still go to the bazaar. The narrator goes to the station and gets into the train, which leaves almost immediately. When it arrives at the station, the boy runs out as it was already 9.50 and the market shut down at 10 in the evening. He runs into the bazaar and finds most stalls are closed. He gets to one selling porcelain products and realizes that everything was out of his price range. The boy walks away with nothing and tears up, disappointed he could not deliver on his promise.