Everything Changes: "Eveline" and its Central Conflict .
"(114) It's a woman's prerogative, as well as the axis around which the central conflict of "Eveline," by James Joyce, spins. Eveline the protagonist of the story is in search of the perfect life. Despite the definitive choice she has assumed at the beginning of the story the reader is quickly introduced to a conflict that carries throughout the remainder of the story. Eveline is not sure what the perfect life really is, and therefore she struggles with what is to come of her situation. Joyce weaves this struggle into a brilliant description of a young woman lost in thought and found in a nightmare. The central conflict is the fact that Eveline can't decide between her lacking life of peasantry and a relatively decent life in Buenos Ayres with a respectable sailor. This conflict is easily tracked and developed throughout the story and peaks at the very ending when a seemingly foreshadowed end is the result.
"She sat at the window watching the evening invade the avenue."(113) James Joyce chose such language to suggest to his audience early on that there was a struggle to be discovered. A person with a bright frame of mind might not embrace nightfall, but it is obvious that there is some sort of dread in the air of Eveline's actions. She sees the evening not only approach but invade her senses as well as the avenue. This is the audience's first hint that a conflict is sure to come. The next hint comes when Eveline starts to reminisce about her past and all of the good times she's had in her life just as it is. She recognizes that there are dark spots as well, but she has survived this far into her life. She starts to weigh her options in that, she can stay where she is, in the same house she has lived in her whole life and accept the changes that are occurring around her, or she can make her own changes and escape on her own intentions, to Buenos Ayres with her sailor.