February 15, 2006
Symbolism: Helpful or Hurtful to a Story?
Symbolism is a topic which is constantly hashed and rehashed in literature circles, usually coming up with loads of meanings that the author didn't even intend for his or her story. Though this isn't neccessarily bad, it is a case where there can be too much of a good thing.
Because of the nature of symbolism itself, you can read pretty much whatever you want into any object or place you happen to read about in a work of literature. The key to interpreting symbolism in a story is not only to read meaning into an object, but to give it a meaning which is condusive in carrying on the plot and theme of the work itself. You may have noticed in many of my earlier blog entries that I interpreted symbols in some amusings ways, and though this was good for a joke, it really didn't help the reading of the story at all.
I guess what I'm trying to say is that symbolism is a good thing to an extent, but when readers and critics try to over analyze every single piece of information in the story it gets tedious, and in effect, takes away from the overall story.
Posted by PaulCrossman at February 15, 2006 12:49 PM