The 15 short stories that make up James Joyce's Dubliners give a realistic account of the life in and around Dublin, Ireland, in the early 20th century. In many of the short stories within the work, Joyce includes the Irish struggle for self-identity through epiphanies from the main characters.
The first short story, The Sisters, is a first person account of a young boy's relationship with a Priest and the boy's eventual acceptance of the Priest's death due to illness. In another story, A Painful Case, Mr. Duffy begins a friendship with the married Mrs. Sinico. However, when Mrs. Sinico tries to make the relationship more than friends, Mr. Duffy ends all meetings with her and resumes his life of solitude. Years later, Mr. Duffy discovers from a newspaper article that Mrs. Sinico died after being hit by a train. The article reveals that the death is thought to be suicide, and Mr. Duffy notes that she had started drinking two years prior- at the same time that Mr. Duffy had ended their friendship. Mr. Duffy feels guilty for ending his relationship with Mrs. Sinico and her death makes him come to the understanding that he really is alone. These and other stories that make up the work, paint an interesting and detailed picture of how James Joyce viewed the strong yet uncertain future of the Irish.
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