Symbolism In Katherine Mansfield's Miss Brill

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Symbolism in Miss Brill Symbolism is the use of symbols to represent ideas or qualities. In the story, “Miss Brill”, Katherine Mansfield frequently uses symbolism to portray the theme. Miss Brill's fur, the young lady in the toque, and the orchestra music are all uses of symbolism. Miss Brill’s fur is kept away in a box, alone, until she takes it out to wear it. This symbolizes Miss Brill leaving her room and walking to the park for her weekly Sunday outing; however, the fur also represents the things that Miss Brill desires. She describes the fur as a "rogue", something that needs companionship. “Never mind—a little dab of black sealing-wax when the time came—when it was absolutely necessary... Little rogue! Yes, she really felt like that…show more content…
It symbolizes feelings of hopefulness that Miss Brill feels. “The band had been having a rest. Now they started again. And what they played was warm, sunny, yet there was just a faint chill— a something, what was it? — not sadness— no, not sadness—a something that made you want to sing. The tune lifted, lifted, the lightshone; and it seemed to Miss Brill that in another moment all of them, all the whole company, would begin singing” (par. 8). She was hopeful and wanted to feel better; however, she still managed to find sadness within. Miss Brill ignores her feelings of sadness until the children in the park make fun of her. Without stopping by the bakery that she loves, Miss Brill walks back to her room, alone, that symbolizes the box that she hides her fur in at the end of the story. “But to-day she passed the baker's by, climbed the stairs, went into the little dark room—her room like a cupboard—and sat down on the red eiderdown. She sat there for a long time. The box that the fur came out of was on the bed. She unclasped the necklet quickly; quickly, without looking, laid it inside. But when she put the lid on she thought she heard something crying” (par. 11). All symbols used in “Miss Brill” help support the theme. Miss Brill longs for companionship and happiness. The reader can infer this because of the box, rejection, and music symbolizing loneliness. All symbols used help the author show her main idea behind the
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