Thursday, April 23, 2009

Booking Through Thursday: Symbolism

My husband is not an avid reader, and he used to get very frustrated in college when teachers would insist discussing symbolism in a literary work when there didn’t seem to him to be any. He felt that writers often just wrote the story for the story’s sake and other people read symbolism into it.

It does seem like modern fiction just “tells the story” without much symbolism. Is symbolism an older literary device, like excessive description, that is not used much any more? Do you think there was as much symbolism as English teachers seemed to think? What are some examples of symbolism from your reading?

I think that there is still symbolism in books today. I think it's too hard not to write some kind of symbols in whether you mean to or not. But the older books do have alot more symbolism. I do think that alot of people read symbols into books where there wasn't meant to be any though. Like in the Harry Potter books. I ran across a book that had a title something like: "Finding God in Harry Potter". Well...I've read all the books and if the author wrote God into her books it was pretty hidden. I think it's actually a little ridiculous when people get extreme about finding symbolism that probably isn't there.


Share your opinion.

4 comments:

Bluestocking said...

I think symbolism is like hindsight, it's always in the past.

mine

gautami tripathy said...

Symbolism is very much there in todays comics otherwise known as graphic novels. In fantasy novels, poetry etc. Sometimes it stares in your face, sometimes, you have to look out for it.

Symbolism in writing

Such The Spot said...

I tend to agree with you. I've had many people read my manuscript and completely interpret things in ways I never intended. I guess your perspective can "color" what you read. I think that's a good thing though. :)

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