The Boarding House by James Joyce, Human Nature, Traditional Myth, Beliefs.

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David Ronca Professor Paul Wright English 101 - Section 403 03 October 2007

The Boarding House Essay

The beliefs of the "traditional myth" will always conflict with the actions of human nature. The myth commands that we consistently make the honorable choice when faced with right or wrong. The needs and desires that drive people to act in specific ways can be credited to our natural human behavior. Those desires cause us to sin. Everybody sins, even those who are considered to be good hearted people. As humans, we are able to understand this idea; however, when the occasion comes to follow our ethical direction, human nature will over power the moral decisions that we encounter. In "The Boarding House", James Joyce expresses his character's inability to follow the "traditional myth" of their society. Joyce gradually reveals that they were motivated by shame, love, and rejection from civilization.

Most people consider socially acceptable actions to be ones that are ethical to all people in society.

Mrs. Mooney, described as "the madam" by her tenants, becomes motivated to ensure the marriage between her daughter and Mr. Doran; owing to her disgrace of using Polly as sensual entertainment for her own gain. At first notice of the affair she observes Mr. Doran and Polly but has an early sense of confidence in him and advocates the activity. Mrs. Mooney is expressed by the author as a strict judge with her decisions coming mainly from public opinion but her desires to run a successful business led her to expose her daughter as amusement. The author then describes how Mrs. Mooney has already setup a plan to accuse Mr. Doran of, "taking advantage of Polly's youth and inexperience" (Joyce, par 8) With this in mind it gave Mrs. Mooney the assurance she...