Being involved in the Modern World: James Joyce and T.S. Eliot’s Gabriel Conroy plays many roles. He’s a family man who loves his family profoundly. This can be seen by his interaction with his family and how he is the life of the party and presence alone sparks excitement in his family members. Often times he puts his masculine skills to work and offers to carve the goose at family functions and events. He is a very loving nephew to his elder aunts who appreciates his cheerful presence whenever he is around. However, when it comes to interacting with other women such as his wife Gretta, Lily the maid and Miss Ivors Gabriel often struggle.
Gabriel is looked upon as being social awkward and offensive because of his short temper and he struggles to establish a connection with these women. He wavers into conversations with Lily and then he picks on her for having a boyfriend. When he does this Lily becomes extremely offended. This character she finds is very obnoxious of Gabriel(Joyce).
Now with Gretta, he appears to be deeply in love with her and has been for a long time. Gretta actually brings out his softer side and is very fond of Gabriel. Gabriel still feels like the head of the relationship and is the primary decision maker in the relationship. Gretta knows her worth regardless of how Gabriel acts and feels. She also knows that Gabriel is not the most sympathetic man.
One might raise the question as to why Gabriel is not on good terms of other individuals outside of his relationship. As the narrative develops Gabriel makes quite a name for himself as being a cause for uneasiness amongst the Dubliners and the other main characters. There are sometimes when the good outweigh the bad with Gabriel. Which totally catches the readers off guard and is really unexpected.
Gabriel’s inability to make a good impression on others, finds himself second guessing actions and words. He’s often in this position because he struggles to predict the feelings of other individuals.
As the story develops the character Gabriel is often seen as being challenged by the constant negativity in his life. This level of discomfort makes him feel the highest level of personal crisis within himself as well as being socially isolated. Gabriel prides himself as a confident man. His authoritative demeanor is still very cautious as encounter peers at the Morkan party. This is when the readers can see how Gabriel is such the social performer. This is a point where the audience can see that Gabriel is not as insensitive as portrayed early on the story. The readers can clearly see Gabriel is human and its completely normal as he is very careful in steps as he communicates and he carefully thinks every thought through. One can clearly see that he has a communication issue and he has to challenge himself when his confidence is in doubt.
In conclusion we will see that Gabriel is as overconfident man, who has faced several personal challenges that seem to not end with every passing day. (Walzl).
Joyce, James. The dead. Coyote Canyon Press, 2008.
Walzl, Florence L. “Gabriel and Michael: The Conclusion of” The Dead”.” James Joyce Quarterly. 4.1 (1966): 17-31.