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The Glass Unicorn's Symbolism By Tennesse Williams

927 words - 4 pages

The Glass Menagerie is a modern American play written by Tennessee Williams in 1944. The Glass Menagerie entails the genre of tragedy and family drama in the aftermath of The Great Depression. The play is based off of the narrator and protagonist, Tom Wingfield’s, memory. Williams uses several symbols throughout the play, but he focuses mainly on the title of the play as the most important symbol throughout. As the title of the play tells us, glass menagerie are collections of glass animals. Laura Wingfeild, Tom’s sister in the play, is the collector of these little glass animals. Laura is a very peculiar person who struggles both physically and emotionally. She collects them as her own way ...view middle of the document...

In scene three, Tom and Amanda engage in a very loud verbal altercation. Laura being as delicate as she is has to listen to them argue. Meanwhile, this puts her feeling hurt, even if it is not directed toward her. Tom gets ready to leave and gets mad putting on jacket and slings it across room, hitting Laura’s glass collection and breaking some. As selfish as Tom and Amanda are, they pay no attention to Laura crying over her broken glass ornament, until Tom is alone with Laura. Accordingly, we see how important the glass collection is to her and the connection she has with it.
In scene four we see that Laura not only has a connection with her glass, but also with her brother Tom. We see this when Laura is worried that the reason for Tom’s absence from the apartment majority of the time, is because he is unhappy being there. Tom’s mother tells him that Laura needs to be taken good care of when she is dependent and lonely. This is similar to the glass unicorn in that it is lonely and has to be taken well care of also or it will break; just like Laura might if she is not taking good care of.
Moreover in scene five, Tom has finally found a gentleman caller for Laura. Unlike Tom, Amanda thinks her peculiar personality trait will be an advantage for her when meeting him and try’s everything in her power to make it the best first date. This is another way the author uses the unicorn to symbolize Laura peculiarity and loneliness.
In the begging of scene six, Laura’s glasslike unicorn characteristics are more apparent. It is described in the stage directions as her being...

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