"Araby" by James Joyce uses setting and atmosphere in creating a general tone for the short story. At the beginning of the story, the street the boy lives on is described as "blind", "quiet", and "cold." These descriptions help the reader look into the life of this boy and his home life with his family. While helping his aunt, the boy passes the ugly and dreary surroundings that he lives in. While carrying his aunt's parcels "amid the curses of laborers" and being "jostled by drunken men and bargaining women", he enters his dream world. Joyce makes this reality rather bleak and shows how the boy transforms these bleak images into ones of romance and enchantment. The boy is basically blind to his own reality which links him to the home he lives in which is on North Richmond Street, a blind street.
Joyce also uses the description of the priest's home to enhance the story. In the home of the priest, there is a rusted bicycle pump and many books that were once great. The boy seems to be only fascinated in the color of the books and not their content. This description of the priest's home kind of represents the street that the boy lives on. This home was once active and lively with great literature and now, it has fallen upon decay and negligence with the death of the priest.
The boy finally comes into reality when he reaches "Araby." Originally the boy has envisioned an "oriental enchantment." Instead, he comes upon a dark and empty marketplace where profits have priority. This final trip to the bazaar opens the boy's eyes to the world around him and the blindness disappears. .