The Glass Bowl Symbolism

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Introduction The Cut glass bowl was published in 1918 as part of the collection Flappers and Philosophers. The short story was written by F. Scott Fitzgerald. Setting The Cut glass bowl is set in the late 1800’s to the late 1910’s. The story takes place during a time when woman had few rights and divorce was taboo. Though it isn’t explicitly stated the country the novel is set, one can assume it is the United States. The entire story is situated inside Evelyn’s house and revolves around the cut glass bowl in the dining room. Fitzgerald uses the weather and sounds to relay the emotions Evelyn is feeling. After Evelyn finds a letter informing her of the death of her son, it states “The house that had seemed whirring, buzzing a moment since, was suddenly very quiet…a breath of air crept in through the open front door carrying the noise of a passing motor.” (Fitzgerald, 353) Summary The story begins with the introduction of Mrs. Fairbolt who is visiting her friend Mrs. Evelyn Piper, a beautiful young lady who was in her late 20’s. Mrs. Fairbolt notices a pretty glass cut bowl in the house and Evelyn explains the history behind it. A former boyfriend of Mrs. Piper gave it to her as a wedding present and compared her to the ball saying that it was “Beautiful and empty and easy to see through, just like you.”…show more content…
The story began “There was a rough stone age and a smooth stone age and a bronze age, and many years afterward a cut-glass age.” (Fitzgerald, 335) From this quote, one cannot even derive the setting of the story. But by the end of the story one can understand the mentality of Evelyn. Fitzgerald expresses this when Evelyn witnesses the bowl speaking, “You see, I am fate,” it shouted, “and stronger than your puny plans; and I am how-things-turn-out and I am different from your little dreams, and I am the flight of time and the end of beauty and unfulfilled desire.” (Fitzgerald,
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