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Epiphany, Paralysis and Dubliners

 

 

The progress of the protagonist of Dubliners is nothing but the journey of the archetypal Dubliner through his/her own life.
Every person in the world, though, can see his/her own journey mirrored in the journey of the single Dubliner through the phases of his/her life.

Dubliners are paralyzed because of religious and political (that is, moral) pettiness (narrowness of mind).
They can’t live life to the fullest.
All people in the world are paralyzed the same way.

Joyce chooses to represent paralysis by means of the *epiphany*.
Epiphany = visible manifestation of something invisible.

In Christianity, for example, Epiphany celebrates the day in which Jesus Child manifested (became visibile) to the Magi, thus becoming the visible manifestation (Jesus Child, a visible new born baby) of something invisible (the Grace of God who sent Him).
So:
God *epiphanizes* Himself through Jesus Child >>> God made Himself visible through Jesus Child.

The same way the paralysis of the mind is epiphanized  (made visible!) by the paralysis of the body.
So all protagonists of Dubliners are paralyzed (the boy in Araby, Eveline…)
Eveline is *physically* paralyzed when she grabs the railing at the harbour.
This event  visibly shows (epiphany >>> visible manifestation) her mental (invisible!) paralysis.