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"Show how Dickens uses symbolism to create the perverse character of Miss Havisham"

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"Show how Dickens uses symbolism to create the perverse character of Miss Havisham" Symbols have always been a very important aspect of life; they have different meanings for different people. There are many different symbols, and because each symbol has a different meaning for each person, symbols are therefore subjective. Writers like Charles dickens use symbolism in their writing in order to portray different aspects of characters, and to keep the readers constantly captivated. In life, symbols are everywhere; they are around individual's necks, on cloths, adverts, and magazines. Certain shapes have different meanings, for most people the shape of a broken heart symbolises for example a break-up for others however it could symbolise two sides of two friends. Sometimes colours can also have an impact on a particular shape to make a symbol, red could symbolise love and black heart would represent hate, the opposite of love. The reason why they are called symbols is because, humans have invented the meanings behind these shapes and signs and the symbolism is open to various forms of interpretations. In literature, a symbol is an object , for example ( the keys in Estella's hands to the locked gates at the satis house) or a place ( the darkness, the dressing rooms of Miss Havisham could represent something else, an atmosphere, and emotion, a state of mind of a character for example a stormy sea could represent confusion, anger or even depression. ...read more.


doors gates, and baring all her windows, so no light can shine into her room, she just carries on living in her own dark depressed world. Another type of symbolism, identified in great expectations, is the pain of Miss Havisham. For example, the painful memories of her failed wedding that she doesn't want to, and cannot forget at all, by keeping everything in the same place for many years, and also by still wearing everything she was also wearing on the day she was going to get married, for example her wedding dress, which by time had already lost its natural bright beautiful white colour to a yellow old looking decayed colour, and also she was still wearing shoe, ...saw that the silk stocking on it, once white, now yellow, had been trodden ragged. Without this arrest of everything, this standing still of all the pale decayed objects, nor even the withered bridal dress on the collapsed form could have looked do like grave-clothes, or the long veil so like a shroud.' Emphasises, that Miss Havisham is totally dead as a character, and there is no more life left in her, also that she just carries and wears everything that constantly reminds her of her tragedy, and she just does not let go. After so many years, she had not even taking all the jewellery for the wedding off, she is till wearing them after so many years, and has not ...read more.


Nothing has changed. When Miss Havisham moves something, she puts it back in exactly the same position. She "put down the jewel exactly on the spot from which she had taken it up." Time has stood still in the room. Dickens describes her clothes as "grave -clothes" associating her clothes with death, implying that they were dull, old and ghostly looking. Miss Havisham is vengeful, (as already identified) towards men because she had her 'heart broken' by one when she was left at the altar. Her adopted daughter, Estella whom she gets to break Pip's heart, carries out her revenge. She encourages Estella to do this with statements such as 'Well you can break his heart'. The way Miss Havisham tries to manipulate Pip and Estella also suggests her character is very strange. Miss Havisham subjugates and patronises Pip. She makes Pip admit his feelings towards Estella after Estella had made fun of him. Miss Havisham embarrasses him. She does this to make him feel small, stupid and unimportant as a man, and to increase Estella's pride. Up to this point, we can see how evil Miss Havisham is, and everything she has been through, she wants other people to feel her pain as well, maybe to perhaps make it a bit easier for her to cope with her depression and pain she is going through every single day and night.... THE END ?? ?? ?? ?? Claudia Akomah-Bioh 11W-English Coursework Miss Van Rheede 'Great Expectations' by Charles Dickens 1 ...read more.

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