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The Symbolism of the Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams - Essay Example

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The Symbolism of the Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams

One can meet a lot of different symbols in the play. Nevertheless, Laura’s glass menagerie, glass unicorn as well as the movies, which are the great passion of Tom, can be seen as extremely important symbols that describe the degree of the main heroes’ detachment from the reality. The glass menagerie adored by Laura has several meanings. Firstly, it embodies a world of illusions, which is particularly important for Laura. She cannot live in reality. She can live in a world of illusions, which allow her to feel comfortable. At the same time, any illusion is fragile. For this reason, the author has chosen glass as a material that is extremely fragile and requires careful treatment. The glass menagerie is a world full of light, happiness, and tranquility. It is not related to the brutal reality and is able to give joy and peace. In addition, the fragility of the glass menagerie allows the author to show the features of Laura’s inner world. Similar to the glass menagerie, Laura has qualities such as refinement, quirkiness and of course fragility. In certain lights, the glass menagerie refracts all colors of the rainbow. Similarly, in the right light, the girl can show different sides of her personality that make her special and unique among others. In general, it can be argued that “Laura, given her own physical disability and intimidated temperament, finds solace in retreating to the delicate world of glass menagerie collection” (Ching-Liang). The glass unicorn is no less important symbol in the play. It fully embodies Laura's peculiarity. Similar to the fact that unicorns are “extinct” in the modern world by representing a specific kind of horses, Laura is also characterized by her uniqueness and loneliness. The unicorns fate follows the fate of the girl in Scene Seven.  ...Show more

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An author of the essay "The Symbolism of the Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams" outlines that the author uses various symbols to convey the features of the relationship between the members of the family and the reality that surrounds them…
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