Welcome to Francis Academic Press

Frontiers in Art Research, 2020, 2(7); doi: 10.25236/FAR.2020.020703.

Life is Elsewhere a Comparative Study of “Araby” and “How I Met my Husband”


Yuan Tian

Corresponding Author:
Yuan Tian

School of English Language and Culture, Xiamen University Tan Kah Kee College


This paper offers a comparative study of two pieces of short stories: namely, James Joyce’s “Araby” and Alice Munro’s “How I Met my husband” from the perspective of literary genre Bildungsroman. The protagonists’ development from innocence to maturity according to the three distinctive features of Bildungsroman are discussed, and the focus is on the similarities revealed in both stories when the protagonists try to pursue order and value in their growth and struggles. Specifically, two pairs of conflicts will be discussed: the confrontation between the child and adult worlds and the impingement of the reality on the ideal.


Comparative Study, protagonists’ development, discussed

Cite This Paper

Yuan Tian. Life is Elsewhere a Comparative Study of “Araby” and “How I Met my Husband”. Frontiers in Art Research (2020) Vol. 2 Issue 7: 15-30. https://doi.org/10.25236/FAR.2020.020703.


[1] Abcarian, Richard, and Marvin Klotz. ed. “Innocence and Experience”. Literature: The Human Experience. 6th ed. New York: ST. Martin’s Press, 1994.
[2] Barnet, Sylvan. A Short Guide to Writing about Literature. New York: Bantam Books, 1990.
[3] "BookRags Study Guide on Bildungsroman." 9 December 2006. http://www. bookrags.com/studyguide-bildungsroman/.
[4] Brooks, Cleanth, and Pobert Penn Warren. “What Character Reveals”. Understanding Fiction. 3rd. Beijing: Pearson Education Asia and Foreign Language Teaching and Research Press. 2004.
[5] Coulthard, A. R. World Literature in Rewiew. The Electronic Text Center. 6 November, 2006. < http: // www.elibrary. com/ id/2525/get doc.og/ >.
[6] “Description of Genre”. 9 Dec. 2006. http://www.answers.com/ topic/bildungsroman.
[7] “Epiphany”.Wikipedia. 20 November, 2006. <http:// en.wikipedia.org/wiki/>.
[8] Joyce, James. Dublishers. New York: Bantam Books, 1990.
[9] McNeely, Ronald Brenton. “Double Reading Early James Joyce: The Necessity of Contrapuntal Readings of Dublishers and the Portrait of the Artist as an Young Man”. Wanfang Date into Site. 19 Oct. 2006. <http://xa.wanfangdata. com.cn:8088/wf/cddb/cddbft.htm>.
[10] Munro, Alice. “How I Met my Husband”. Modern Canadian Stories. Ed. John Stevens. Toronto: Bantam Books, 1975.
[11] Petra, Rau. “Bildungsroman”. The Literary Encyclopedia. 13 Nov. 2002. 13 Dec. 2006. <http://www.literacyc.com/php/ stopics.php?rec=true&UID=119>.
[12] Phelps, Gilbert. From Myth to Modernism: A Short Guide to the World Novel. London and New York: Routledge, 1988.
[13] “Summary and Analysis of Araby”. 20 October, 2006. <http: www.gradesaver. com/classicnotes/titles/>.
[14] “The Setting and Atmosphere in Araby”. 19 October, 2006. <http:// www. 123helpme. com/>.
[15] You, Qiaorong. “On the Ephiphany Used in James Joyce’s Novels”. The Study of Foreign Literature. 4 (2003): 78.