In the novels Brooklyn and The Translator we see the theme of the home prevalent in many different forms. The idea of home, leaving home, and returning home is a very proficient focus point for the paper. In addition, the concept of home means something very different to each character and how issues such as immigration/emigration, exile, and going back home play out in the narrative. From a rainy Ireland to a bustling New York City, or perhaps from the Western part of Sudan to Chad; the people demonstrate the idea of nationalism and a purpose of being.
The idea of having a place to call your own, symbolizes the American Dream, and the desire of many people in the world. As depicted in Brooklyn, the theme of home is embodied very effectively in 1950’s Ireland where a young lady named Eilis Lacey, has trouble finding work. The story begins with Eilis working a dead-end job at a local market until her sister, Rose and her friend Father Flood, discussing a possible job opening in Brooklyn, New York. She then leaves for America and beings to work at a department store, where the majority of her daily anecdotes come from. Eilis, after being dragged out by her fellow boarders, to attend a church fundraising dance leaves in disappointment, but the second time around she meets a man named Tony. She eventually would go on to fall in love with him, and he proposes to her, only after she had received devastating news that her sister Rose, has passed away because he feared that she wouldn’t want to leave home again and come back to America. She then set off back to Ireland
to comfort her mother who was very distressed about the death of her daughter. The story ends with Eilis boarding the boat to go back to America. Throughout the novel, the narrator describes Eilis’ residency in an intricate manner. The descriptive nature of this style is exhibited when Toibin describes the house itself did not seem strange; Eilis noted only its solid, familiar aura, the lingering smell of cooked food, the shadows(211). Another instance of this is when she went into her new room in Brooklyn, a standard lamp in the corner and a lamp by a bedside table were already lit, and these, with the low ceiling and the dark velvet curtains and the richly patterned bedspread and the rugs on the floor, made the room seem luxurious, like something from a painting or an old photograph(102). The expound way in which Toibin illustrates Eilis new bedroom, shows the symbolic nature it represents, and the meaning Toibin wanted to give it. The vivid imagery in his writing demonstrates his knowledge of Ireland, and his ability to imagine what Brooklyn was like 50 years ago, despite never setting foot in Brooklyn, New York. In addition, it seems that the home has a rather profound importance to him. The way he describes Eilis’ home, makes it evident that he enjoys having his own space that he can call his own, and he can goes to extra lengths to do so. I like men The...