On most occasions, an object can be more clearly explained to the reader if the writer uses a symbol to represent it. In politics, flags, banners, acronyms, and pictures can be used as a symbol. For example, the United States flag contains fifty stars, each star representing a state. It also contains thirteen horizontal stripes. These stripes signify the thirteen colonies. Symbols are also used in math operations, shapes, and sets of numbers. For instance, in the equation 20+10=30, the + symbol is used for addition, and the = symbol is used to show the answer for the equation. Colors may also be used as a symbol. In some countries, the color white represents purity while the color black embodies evil or mourning. Colors, in some ways, can represent the tone or mood of something.In the novel, Pip, a young orphan living with his sister and her husband in the marshes of Kent, sits in a cemetery one evening looking at his parents’ tombstones. Suddenly, an escaped convict springs up from behind a tombstone, grabs Pip, and orders him to bring him food and a file for his leg irons. Pip obeys, but the fearsome convict is soon captured anyway. The convict protects Pip by claiming to have stolen the items himself. One day Pip is taken by his Uncle Pumblechook to play at Satis House, the home of the wealthy dowager Miss Havisham, who is extremely eccentric: she wears an old wedding dress everywhere she goes and keeps all the clocks in her house stopped at the same time. During his visit, he meets a beautiful young girl named Estella, who treats him coldly and contemptuously. Nevertheless, he falls in love with her and dreams of becoming a wealthy gentleman so that he might be worthy of her. He even hopes that Miss Havisham i…
… still…the cake uneaten, but her lack of fulfillment turns on processes of decay, cobwebs, insects, rotting, her own aging” (as quoted in “What the Dickens” 4). She stopped time in her own “diseased mind” (Takei 41). Life must continue because time can not cease. It can not even stop for Miss. Havisham despite all her efforts and all her fortune to attempt to bring it to a standstill.
Dickens, Charles. Great Expectations. London: Oxford, 1992. Print.
“Great Expectations: Themes, Motifs, and Symbols.” Spark Notes. N.p., 23 Feb.
2009. Web. 11 Mar. 2011.
Harber, John. “What the Dickens.” Harber’s Art Reviews: Lacan’s GreatExpectations. N.p., Jan. 2004. Web. 4 Apr. 2011.
Takei, Akiko. “Miss. Havisham and the Victorian Psychiatry.” The Japan Branch
Bulletin of the Dickens Fellowship 12 Oct. 2004: 39-54. Print.