Brooklyn Essay

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Brooklyn Notes: ! Nuance - a minor moment in a novel ! There are nuanced moments in the text (e.g. the scene with Ms . Fortini) which foreshadows Eilis’ complacency. ! Eilis chooses to live within the confines of the values she was raised with. ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! We don’t see Eilis have outbursts; rather she has inner conflict. Tom Coibin relies on us interpreting the inner conflict/silence of his characters. Silence is a motif. The novel ends with this silence - Eilis leaves her mother in silence, she doesn’t say goodbye to Jim. Going back to her childhood place creates another reality for Brooklyn. Occasionally her life in Brooklyn intercedes her new life (when she thinks about it). While she outwardly appears calm and to be coping, inwardly she is in a state of conflict. Eilis comes to Ireland under difficult circumstances. Prior to this, Rose is her confidant. At the peek moment of Eilis’ growth, Rose is killed off. Cathartic ending - Eilis will not resist and chooses the easiest path (the path that causes the least change). She has grown as much as Eilis can grow. She will live divided, with a constant yearning for Ireland. New experiences in Brooklyn juxtaposes with old experiences at home (comparing water in Brooklyn to water in Ireland when at the beach). New experiences are poignant by highlighting Eilis’ naivety (first watches others before agreeing to anything - at the dance and at the beach). He “made” me and yet no aggressive imagery - Eilis is not uncomfortable with Tony’s actions, she is only trying to justify her changes in values. There is imagery to symbolise Eilis’ discomfort in the Ms. Fortini scene. Eilis kisses Tony; juxtaposition with him making her hold him (“he made her put her arms around his neck…she, in turn, felt a great tenderness towards him and kissed him deeply”). ! See Eilis for the first time acting passionately. ! … ! ! Rose

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