The Fear and Guilt of moving Forward The Theme of a story is said to be the central idea or meaning of a story. It deals with the message the author is trying to convey to the readers. The story “Eveline” written by author James Joyce reflects a theme that shows even with the promise of happiness and love, one may not always be able to overcome the feelings of guilt and fear in order to choose a life of joy. Although the themes of fear and guilt are quite prominent in the story Eveline, these are not the only themes present in the story. Several other themes that could be found in the story Eveline are those of Indecisiveness, Family, Security and Sacrifice. Joyce used several literary devices to successfully portray each theme in the story. The theme of Indecisiveness becomes evident in the story as Eveline starts to compare and contrast her leaving home as well as the notion of staying with her abusive father. She does this by making a mental list of about two times in her life where her father was actually nice to her and aboutall the nice things that Frank has done for her. Eveline had even come up with the notion that if she leaved her father might miss her. Her indecisiveness is reflected again in the story as she freezes up when it’s time to board the ship with Frank to Buenos Aires. It is quite evident that Evelinewas unable to decide if she prefers a dull and stressful life with her father or a new vibrant life with Frank. We can also feel her fear when she "stood up in a sudden impulse of terror" and makes the decision to join Frank.The reason for this sudden reaction was the flashback she had of her mother; Eveline was swept with fear of becoming just like her mother. We again felt her guilt when she is thinking of staying even "after all he (Frank) had done for her".