Symbolism In Rosalind Warren's Furniture Fight

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According to author Ray A. Davis, “A challenge only becomes an obstacle when you bow to it” (Goodreads.) Such is the case for Linda in Rosalind Warren’s “Furniture Fight,” in which the narrator is visiting the home of her recently remarried father only to find him and her stepmother Linda arguing over furniture. Moreover, she discovers that Linda’s frustrations is tied to her recent cancer diagnosis, and her refusal to face it. The story illustrates that a lack of communication with loved ones about stressful issues can force a person to run away from their problems. The unfortunate result is demonstrated by the symbolism behind the patio furniture, the father’s ironic inability to understand Linda’s circumstances, and Amelia’s failure to connect…show more content…
When the narrator visits her father and step mother’s new home, she discovers that they have been arguing over furniture noting that Linda is “obsessed with furniture (15).” The narrator states so to provide background on Linda’s fixation on furniture. Later in the story, the narrator embarks on a tour of the living room and reminisces about a conversation with her bitter sister, and Linda’s unreal diagnosis with cancer, noting that she acts “as if she didn’t have cancer, so successfully that I keep forgetting she’s sick (17).” This begins to unveil the connection between Linda’s obsession of furniture, and her cancer diagnosis, giving the impression that it is representative of her coping mechanism. In fact, when the narrator attempts to delve deeper into the roots of Linda’s frustration, Linda “sits down … and begins to cry (18)” on the patio. Linda continues to cry until Amelia brings up furniture, which acts to comfort her. This signifies Linda’s strong need to use furniture to deny her reality. The furniture and all the arguments surrounding it allow her to forget her problems, and act like everything is
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