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The Glass Menagerie Symbolism Essay

641 words - 3 pages

In the Glass Menagerie, author Tennessee Williams employs insightful symbolism in order to convey the relentless power of memory. Memory: the source by which one stores and remembers information. While it proves a vital source in daily life, this process can be lethal to our emotional and logical state. When evaluating these recollections, perspective plays a momentous role in their impact on the future.
The unicorn embodies the true essence of Laura’s personality and mental state. Unicorns- “extinct in the modern world,” don’t inhabitant the world, aside from Laura’s glass sculpture. Being the only one of its kind leaves the unicorn “sort of lonesome” due to its inability to interact with any one of his kind. This circumstance is parallel in Laura’s life as well. Struggling to fit in throughout her life, she proves unable to feel accepted for who she is. Whether it is high school, business school, and even in her own home- ...view middle of the document...

Laura undergoes this same change. By gaining power over her shyness, she is able to conquer it, and leads to a promising future in relationships and emotional confidence.
Rainbow colors allow for one to look beyond the point of what is blatantly obvious. While the glass remains transparent, just as Laura it can be perceived as typical and insignificant. However, looking at both in the right light produces a series of rainbow colors- a vision of beauty. In depth perception must be achieved by observing closely and in different perspectives, to determine an accurate opinion. Laura becomes infatuated with the glass that she treasures because she has the ability to witness the same changes in it, as herself. Although Laura appears bland and subdued to mere passers-by, when looked at more closely it can be discovered that she has a glowing, fluorescent personality. The glass that is reflected off of is fragile yet beautiful, just as Laura’s inner self.
Although one is often times able to adapt, escape occasionally serves as the only available option, which is when the fire escape become utilized. The name does not deceive the true nature of its function. The fire escape is the means by which the characters are able to escape from the chaos, deception, and dysfunctional nature of the Wingfield residence. Most often used by Tom to smoke, the fire escape landing aids in his personal getaway from the household and reality. While he is able to remove him self from unpleasant situations at any given moment, his strong personality and will shows through. However, others don’t enjoy the same privilege. Laura, very fragile and insecure, heads to the fire escape, where she falls, proves her inability to remove herself from her unfortunate situation. While Tom can escape his misfortune, Laura must face hers, despite any discomfort. The reality of life’s inescapable circumstances shows through.
The unicorn, rainbow colors, and the fire escape remain significant factors of symbolism in determining characterization and the adversity presented throughout life. True escape from memories serves as a common misconception that cannot be

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