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An Analysis Of Why Jimmy Doyle Will Never Succeed In Life Due To His Father Essay, Research Paper

An Analysis of Why Jimmy Doyle Will Never Succeed in Life Due to His Father

In “After The Race”, by James Joyce in the book “Dubliners”, the main

character, Jimmy Doyle will be an unproductive citizen, fooling around with his

friends and living off of his father’s money for the rest of his life. In this

short story he demonstrated that he doesn’t realize the value of money, because

he has never had to work for it, hence he is too frivolous with it at times.

Jimmy also likes to be with his friends and to not work hard at what he does.

Jimmy has no work ethic because his father had a lot of money, in fact he is

referred to as a “merchant prince” in Dublin due to his success as a butcher,

and his father did not want Jimmy to work for what he has, but would rather see

his son become popular and make a lot of connections. Jimmy’s father is the

reason he will never succeed in life on his own.

Jimmy Doyle grew in a family that was quite well off financially due to

the hard work of his father. Mr. Doyle made a lot of money through hard work

and sacrifice as butcher, and he wanted nothing but the best for his son. He

did not want his son to work as hard as he did growing up. When Jimmy went away

to college, he spent more time socializing than he did studying. “Jimmy did not

study very earnestly and took to bad courses for awhile. He had money and he

was popular; …”(p.25). Jimmy liked better to be in the company of peers

rather than study, and his father condoned it. When Jimmy was not doing well at

Dublin University, his father let him go off to Cambridge where he could “see

life a little”. While there he seemed to run the bills a little high, and his

father took care of all the expenses because he wanted to show off the money

that he had acquired. The way Jimmy’s dad just gave him money and only wanted

Jimmy to meet people who were “worth knowing” corrupted Jimmy’s work ethic and

his behavior in the book clearly demonstrates this.

Jimmy Doyle has no work ethic and is just happy to be with his friends

accomplishing nothing. Jimmy loves having acquaintances and meeting people. He

was very proud coming through his home town after the big race and being seen in

the car with such people that he was with; Charles, an heir to a hotel empire

and soon-to-be business owner, Charles’ cousin Andre who was going to run

Charles’s new business, and a talented Hungarian piano player. His father was

happy to see his son in such a happy state and was quite proud of the fact that

his son was to have dinner in such company as he was. After dinner, the guys

went out to drink and play cards. Although Jimmy was losing and was actually

having someone else take care of writing out I-O-U’s for him, he continued to

play, just so that he could stay in the company that he was in. At the end of

the night (actually dawn of the next day), Jimmy found himself sitting alone and

terribly in debt, yet it seemed as though it did not matter to him for he knew

that his father would take of him financially.

The support given to Jimmy by his father is detrimental to success of

Jimmy because Jimmy has become to reliant upon him. Although Jimmy’s father

only wants the best for his son, he is actually doing a disservice to his son by

paying up all of his bills, not pushing him to finish college, only wanting him

to make friends in high places and generally show people that he can do all that

because he has money. Essentially Jimmy’s dad is spoiling him and because of it

Jimmy will never succeed on his on.


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