The Reader's "Araby" - Commentary (p. 32)

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This reference to Mangan's sister's undergarments is a stark contrast to what the narrator has said about her up until this point. He is beginning to view her as a sexual conquest in the most simple of ways. This is also contrasting the imagery of the boys playing in the mud, symbolizing Freud's progression of the psyche from the anal stage to the phallic stage.
Clint Johnson, U.S.A. --