The Usage of the Motif of Eyes in Federico Garcia Lorca’s The House of Bernarda Alba

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The Usage of the Motif of Eyes to Illustrate Defiance, Effects of
Repression and Confinement, and Foreshadow in Federico Garcia Lorca’s
The House of Bernarda Alba

Although the human body functions the best when all five senses work, the sense of sight is arguably the most important of the senses. With that intact, it is definitely easier to get by because one will always be aware of the events occurring around him or her. In Federico Garcia
Lorca’s “The House of Bernarda Alba”, the motif of eyes and sight is prevalent, and is used for various purposes: to show rebellion against a greater force, to show the effects of repression and confinement, and as well as a way of foreshadowing. In the play, Lorca could be said to be
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Apart from rebellion, these two examples bring up the point that there is no privacy at home, since everyone is everyone else’s spy. Every event is always witnessed by somebody else, and is subsequently reported back to Bernarda or another person, which adds to the effect of the confinement. In any event, the examples mainly illustrate how Lorca is able to use the motif of eyes to portray rebellion against the dictator of the house.

Although the daughters rebel against Bernarda, her domination clearly still has an effect, especially on the youngest daughter Adela, as can be seen through Lorca’s use of sight. In the first act, Adela’s sister, Magdalena quotes her, “Chickens! Chickens, look at me!” (Lorca
171). Here, Magdalena is referring to the moment when Adela was out in the yard and acting rather bizarrely. She is the youngest and most attractive of all the sisters, but because she is not given the opportunity to expose her beauty to the world and is cooped up instead, it can be hypothesized that she has gone slightly crazy.
Following her quotation, Magdalena said, “She’s the youngest one of us and still has her illusions. I’d give something to see her happy”
(Lorca 171). Firstly, due to the fact that she is imprisoned and is not given any freedom, the

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