I have within my ideology the belief that any man who stands for nothing, not only could, but would fall for anything. I believe through my transaction with “A Little Cloud” from Dublin, Joyce’s repertoire and mine greatly agree through the various elements he uses to display the general paralysis of Dublin, such as character development, setting, plot, point of view, and especially epiphany as I experienced it first hand. Joyce, a seemingly masterful wordsmith, has developed this story “A Little Cloud” through great detail in a way that I can truly relate to everything I see and read; he continues in this story as in the others to reiterate and enforce this strong sense of paralysis this city bears.
Little Chandler, the main character in “A Little Cloud”, is a man with an undeveloped sense of self. Joyce describes how he carries on through life so unattached to his goals, feelings, and desires, as one who is characteristic of this city of Dublin drowned in its paralysis. Joyce writes how he walks through the streets, probably with his head down looking at his feet, passing people who he thinks he is inferior to, but in reality he is not even inferior to himself. He scurries along the dirty dark streets of Dublin on his way. Chandler was a small man, he even “gave one the idea of being a little man. His hands were white and small, his voice was quiet…” From the mere description of Chandler I get the idea that Chandler possess his paralysis in his personal development. It seems as though he has not grown into being a real man.
Through the same yet different token, Gallaher represents a real man. He is a fair-weather friend so to speak as he patronizes “dear dirty Dublin” with his gracious visit and as he rubs the Dubliners’ noses in his success. This is one of his many extensive global trips as he escapes from the hustle and bustle of his successful air in London as a prestigious member of the London Press. Gallaher waits for Chandler in a bar, a real man’s place, for a rendezvous they have to catch up on old times. The first impression of Gallaher is created through his demeanor, as is Chandler’s. He sits with his back against the bar and “his feet planted far apart,” just like a real man who takes up all the space he can. Upon greeting Chandler he initially starts him drinking, hard liquor no less. Then, “Gallaher took off his hat and displayed a large closely cropped head. His face was heavy, pale and clean-shaven. His bluish slate-colour eyes relieved his unhealthy pallor which shone above the vivid orange tie he wore.” Joyce describes the feature of a man who is confident in himself as he shamelessly wears a bald head as not all men can do. Gallaher is indeed successful in his own rite but why does he feel it necessary to come back and revile in his glory? This could be his paralysis shining through his “real man” demeanor.
Moreover with the idea of paralysis through the characters, Mrs. Little Cloud, Annie, marries Chandler, and for what? The two of them are only two years old at marriage and already they are seemingly unhappy and yet they still do not have good communication. In his melancholy moments of thinking about life as he typically becomes sad he thinks about some books from his old days: “…he had been tempted to take one down and read out something to his wife. But shyness had always held him back; and so the books remained on the shelf. At times he repeated lines to himself and this consoled him.” Chandler is now a man who is fairly newly married with a child, a baby boy. Why does he need such consolation from tawdry lines of poetry. Did Annie not see this in her betrothed Little Chandler? Was it her paralysis that allowed herself to marry him in hopes that things would get better? It is only indicative of the paralysis in the city of Dublin in reference to how this couple deals with each other. There are suggested feelings of hate between them yet they do not deal with