The clothes that both Paula Brown and Superman wear are important symbols, one is Paula’s powder blue snowsuit; the other is Superman’s famous blue suit with the red cape trailing behind. They both symbolise different and opposite things, one is self-indulge and petty materialistic which can be used to describe Paula another way to describe her is ‘bossy and stuck up’. Whereas Superman’s suit is a symbol of justice, righteousness and miraculous deliverance from evil, which is how the narrator sees Superman.
He is supposed to come and ‘smash the yellow men’ but sadly since being let down by her family and her friends she no longer sees Superman in her dreams. This evokes our appreciation for the narrator as we can emphasise with her because she had made adult realisations that the world is cruel and unjust. To conclude it is one of Plath’s writing that she often uses symbolism to reinforce the theme of childhood innocence being taken away and the way the narrator make adult realisations.
This creates a sense of sympathising with the unnamed narrator to generate our appreciation of the short story.
The symbols individually may not seem quite significant but when considered together they become vital to understanding the story as they highlight important themes of materialistic, justice and childhood innocence. Through the use of symbolism Plath reminds us that adult realisation is unavoidable evoking our sympathy for the little girl therefore also increasing our appreciation for the unnamed character.
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