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Symbolism is a major aspect in Tennessee Williams famous play The Glass Menagerie On the surface the short slice of life story seems to be simple However if the reader digs deeper they will find that there are several symbols that give each character a deeper meaning Each character defines each symbol in a different way Aside from character symbols there is overall symbolism in this play It is set in a memory so it creates a soft dream-like setting This lends to the whole idea behind the play that the characters are unable to function in reality There are some very noticeable symbols in The Glass Menagerie The first is the actual glass menagerie that represents the fragility of the Wingfields dreamlike existence The second is the fire escape which reflects each characters tendency to escape from reality in their own ways The third is the yellow dress which represents youth and the past The gentleman caller Jim OConnor represents change and also hopes for the future as well as a reflection of Amandas past Tom also has his own symbols of escape He uses his poetry and the movies to run from his problems at home The actual animal collection or glass menagerie symbolizes each character and the story Like the glass animals the characters realities are very fragile and in danger of being shattered It is also as though the characters are stuck in glass unable to move or change also like the glass animals They are inanimate as the characters have learned to be to hide and escape from the pain that life has given them Laura loves the glass Schoendorfer 2 animals because her family is like them It will not take much like Tom leaving to shatter their whole world Laura is symbolized by her fragile collection of glass animals the glass menagerie Her favorite animal is the unique unicorn The unicorn is different because it has
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