Symbolism In Aunt Jennifer's Tigers By Adrienne Rich

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Everything that appears on the surface is not always as it seems. Sometimes words that are not actually spoken, speak louder than those that are. In Adrienne Rich’s poem “Aunt Jennifer’s Tigers,” the eventful death of Aunt Jennifer is easily understood with symbolism such as tigers in the wild and Aunt Jennifer’s wedding band that is used to contrast the control her husband has on her with her embroidering artwork of tigers that are free and happy in the wild. Symbolism like the colors and types of materials used also help to contrast the control Aunt Jennifer’s husband has on her which eventually leads to her death, however, the tigers continue to live happily and free in the wild. Tigers are majestic and fierce animals that cannot be controlled. Rich uses color symbolism to represent the freedom of the tigers that Aunt Jennifer embroiders. “Aunt Jennifer’s tigers prance across a screen,/Bright topaz denizens of a world of green” (Rich 1-2). The color green symbolizes positivity and safety. Aunt Jennifer embroiders with mostly green to show that the tigers are happy and safe. Aunt Jennifer lives through her artwork. She wishes to be as strong and free as the tigers but she cannot be due to her husband. Aunt Jennifer wishes she could be carefree and …show more content…
Rich contrasts Aunt Jennifer’s marriage through the tigers in artwork sewed by Aunt Jennifer. Aunt Jennifer’s troubled marriage is symbolized by her “heavy” wedding band. The wedding band itself does not hold Aunt Jennifer down but the marriage itself does. The tigers are used as symbolism to contrast the freedom and strength that Aunt Jennifer wishes to behold within herself. Aunt Jennifer may look fine on the surface but deep down she holds a sense of remorse for having married her husband and not being as strong as the tigers to leave him when she becomes unhappy with their abusive

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