Unfolding The Symbollic Truth Essay

1228 words - 5 pages

Symbols are a beautiful gift to writing because they give writers the ability to make objects what they want them to be and also give the readers the freedom to explore the possibilities of what the symbols could represent. In Woolf’s To The Lighthouse, the symbolic use of the lighthouse, the sea, and the painting has a significant meaning of how a strong family structure built by very diverse individuals have amongst each other through a modernistic viewpoint. They all relate to the characters differently, however, they all come together, as well as, undergo a change and have a new realization of themselves.
To the literal naked eye and mind, all the symbols have a generic meaning. Viewing ...view middle of the document...

The lighthouse is in the middle of the sea, this shows the space between the lighthouse and the shore. The space and waves that were seen diamonds turn into emotions and the shore becomes characters. In this aspect, the emotions are eating away at the characters that are undergoing change over time. During the storms, the angry demon is translated into the confusion of unknown and unsure emotions while the ships and boats are once again characters being thrown about in the harshness of trying to come to a conclusion of things. The painting has a deeper meaning than a pretty lady on the porch; it is the unity of Mrs. Ramsay and Lily and proving a male stereotype that women could not paint or write wrong; it is the achieving of a goal. The boar skull is no longer nasty-scary art; it is the reality in itself and the realization and presence of death.
In a correlation relationship, these symbols relate to the characters in various ways. The beloved mother, Mrs. Ramsay, is seen as the heart of it all in the novel. When there was a problem they looked up to her to be the guiding light, in which she was. The purpose it seemed she served was to keep the family strong and be the light house, the foundation of that strong family structure. Mr. Ramsay was seen as unpleasant, however, he was like that because he was always worrying about his work and trying to prove his excellence. This proved him to be insecure and Mrs. Ramsay was his comfort zone, his “It is going to be alright” girl. The waves of the sea are related to him due to the unsureness of himself. Just like the waves that go back and forth against the shore, he does the same with himself and emotions. Lily Briscoe, the artist, can also be related to the waves because she to is also unsure of herself. However, when it states, “It was done; it was finished. Yes, she thought, laying down her brush in extreme fatigue, I have had my vision (209).” that is where it is clear that she had found herself and “became one” with Mrs. Ramsay. After she had had accomplished that goal, just as James finally reached the light house; they both became that flashing light of change. As a boy, James had a love hate relationship with his father. What bothered him the most is how it seemed his father took pleasure in telling him that he could not go to the lighthouse. When Mr. Ramsay told him he could not go to...

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