Important Symbols in The Glass Menagerie Essay

1195 Words 5 Pages
CRAM Exclusive
Essay Sample: Page 2
She is different from the others, as unique as the glass unicorn and as easily broken. When Jim bumps into the table and knocks it over, he breaks off the unicorn's horn. Part of the innocence that had kept Laura unique was lost - both Laura and her glass unicorn are broken when exposed to the outside world, represented by Jim. When she gives Jim the unicorn, she is also giving him the innocence and hope that he had destroyed. Laura is still not part of the the outside world but she has come closer to it. She has experienced the world outside of her glass menagerie.



Another recurring symbol in the play is that of the fire escape. It is the entrance and exit for the apartment and it is a representation of the path to the outside world. It is a means of escape for Tom when faced with Amanda's nagging and the cramped apartment. It is the link between the outside world that Tom longs to have and the world that exists in the Wingfield apartment. On the other hand, Laura sees the fire escape as the door to her world; the place that she hides in. She is afraid to open that door for Jim; to let him into her world. When Laura leaves the apartment in this play, she trips and falls. She is unable to function properly outside the security of the apartment building.



Outside the fire escape is the dance hall. It is a symbol for reality and what lies outside the Wingfield apartment. The dance hall is first mentioned before Tom talks to Amanda
CRAM Exclusive
Lace54394Wizard

Related Documents

  • Symbols in the Glass Menagerie Essay

    In the play, The Glass Menagerie, by Tennessee Williams, Williams uses many symbols which represent many different things.?Many of the symbols used in the play try to symbolize some form of escape or difference between reality and illusion.?The first symbol, presented in the first scene, is the fire escape.?This represents the "bridge" between the illusory world of the Wingfields and the world of reality.?This "bridge" seems to be a one way excursion.?But the direction varies for each character.

    Words: 1296 - Pages: 6
  • Symbols and Symbolism in Tennessee Williams' The Glass Menagerie

    Symbols and Symbolism in Tennessee Williams' The Glass Menagerie   The Glass Menagerie illustrates how Tennessee Williams incorporates symbols to help express the central theme of the play. One of the recurring symbols, apparent throughout the play, is that of the "glass menagerie" - symbolic of Laura herself. Another symbol for Laura is the glass unicorn. Still another symbol is that of the picture of the father - symbolic of freedom. These symbols play an important part in the development

    Words: 743 - Pages: 3
  • Glass Menagerie Essay

    Glass Menagerie Fantasy Worlds and Their Symbolism      Everyone has their own little world in which they indulge themselves in whether it be real or just a fantasy. In The Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams, everyone in the play experiences their own little world, and the shock it is to be thrown from it. Tom supports his family despite his unhappiness. He tries to please Amanda by being the sole supporter of the family, but only gets rewarded by Amanda's constant nagging and suspicion. Eventually

    Words: 812 - Pages: 4
  • The Glass Menagerie Essay

    Literary Analysis: The Glass Menagerie Many critics believe that “The Glass Menagerie” is one of Tennessee Williams finest literary pieces, and that like most of his work, it was a reflection of his own life story. Born as Thomas Lanier Williams III on March 26, 1911, in Columbus, Mississippi, he lived with his loving but possessive mother and his older sister, Rose, who later suffered a mental breakdown. His father was a hard man who tended to drink too much and who was often away from home

    Words: 1983 - Pages: 8
  • Tennessee Williams' The Glass Menagerie Essay

    An inability to accept one’s reality and the idea of telling a story through the memory and emotions of someone involve come into play in Tennessee Williams’ The Glass Menagerie. The Glass Menagerie is narrated by Tom Wingfield and tells the story of how he came to leave his mother, Amanda, and his sister, Laura. Amanda is an overbearing Southern women, stuck in the ways of the past and obsessed with finding her daughter the perfect “gentleman caller.” However, Laura is entirely anti-social and

    Words: 894 - Pages: 4
  • Essay on The Glass Menagerie

    The Glass Menagerie In The Glass Menagerie there are many main symbols these are stage props, stage lighting and stage sounds. In regard to stage props the main ones are the glass menagerie, the fire escape and Mr. Wingfield’s picture. Also in terms of stage lighting the main symbols are the candles, spotlight and the moonlight. And finally the main symbols for stage sounds are the Glass menagerie music, paradise dance hall music (PDH) and Laura’s Victorola. Tennessee Williams generally

    Words: 1803 - Pages: 8
  • Essay Symbolism of the Glass Menagerie

    Symbolism of The Glass Menagerie In Tennessee Williams’ play The Glass Menagerie, there is an abundance of symbolism that can be identified through careful analysis of the play write. The story is based around the Wingfield family. The daughter in the story is the central point of most of the symbolism. Laura, the daughter, has a collection of glass figurines in which the title of the play was named after. Within the glass collection there is a glass unicorn which holds a lot of symbolism and

    Words: 673 - Pages: 3
  • Essay on Tom's Escape in The Glass Menagerie

    Tom's Escape in The Glass Menagerie      In Tennessee Williams' play, The Glass Menagerie, each member of the Wingfield family has their own fantasy world in which they indulge themselves. Tom escaped temporarily from the fantasy world of Amanda and Laura by hanging out on the fire escape. Suffocating both emotionally and spiritually, Tom eventually sought a more permanent form of escape.   Tom supports his family despite his unhappiness of his world.  He tries to please Amanda by 

    Words: 780 - Pages: 4
  • What Is the Significance of the Title, "The Glass Menagerie?"

    Why did Tennessee Williams call his play set in the 1930's, a family drama, `The Glass Menagerie'? The play has three main characters, the mother, Amanda and the two children, Tom and Laura. A gentleman caller called Jim steps into the final scenes, and the father of the family is mentioned who left them, `He was a telephone man who fell in love with long distances.' The whole play is about a family who are under pressure both from outside and within their society to live their lives the right

    Words: 892 - Pages: 4
  • Summary of Scene Seven of The Glass Menagerie Essay

    Summary of Scene Seven of The Glass Menagerie Half an hour later, as dinner is finishing up, the lights go out. Tom feigns ignorance of the cause. Amanda, unfazed, continues to be as charming as she can be. She lights candles and asks Jim to check the fuse box. After Jim tells her that the fuse box looks fine, Amanda suggests that he go spend time with Laura in the living room. As Amanda and Tom do dishes in the kitchen, Laura warms up to Jim, who is charming enough to put her ease. She reminds

    Words: 1130 - Pages: 5