Symbolism In Katherine Mansfield's The Garden Party

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The Garden Party Theme analysis The Garden Party by Katherine Mansfield is a story which discusses the effects of isolation, economic class, and personal growth. As society tends to place boundaries on what is acceptable and what is not. One is often forced to decide for themselves whether to conform to the pressures of society or to resist and determine their own destiny. Evidence of pure pressure and internal acceptance are displayed throughout the story.

Mansfield introduces the concept of class and money as a major theme. She divides the “wealthy” and the “working” class into two groups. Mansfield comprises through the different classes through the central character Laura, a young-girl who comes from a family
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The Karakas tree displays how the family has isolated their children from those who are not part of the same social status. The Sheridan’s home being located on top of the hill surrounded by the Karkas trees was also an indication towards there lack of involvement with the lower class who lived at the bottom of the hill. Laura recalls “being forbidden to set foot there”(Mansfield 70). Laura’s isolation sparked her curiosity in the less fortunate society, as she attempts to making a connection with the other side. In addition Laura’s lack of connection to the outer world generates the essence of Laurie’s existance. Laurie generally “steppe[s] out of the shadow”(Mansfield 71), generally when Laura is seeking for reassurance or …show more content…
The Sheridan family represent the stereotypical upper-class. There lack of sympathy for their neighbour death is represented by them referring to their late neighbour as a “creature”. In addition Mrs. Sheriden finds it acceptable to send a basket of leftover “sandwiches, cake, puffs, all uneaten, all going to be wasted”. However, Laura shows a sign of maturity in this situation. She urges her family to withdraw from sending a basket full of leftover as it would be disrespectful. Towards the end of the story when Laura sees the dead body it is apparent that in fact Laurie has matured and has grown into a young women. Furthermore, Laura finds life to be “simply marvellous” (Mansfield 75), as she realizes that the world she lives in is surly privileged. However , she feels that humans should be treated equally. Laurie is also seeking for reassurance of the path she may choose to take. She finds that support from her brother Laurie , whom is really an encouraging voice in her which she finds

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