Symbolism of the Unicorn
"Unicorns--aren't they extinct in the modern world?" (121) Jim concisely he sums up the symbolism between Laura and the glass unicorn. The unicorn, made of glass, contains many of the same properties that Laura has. Laura feels that she is physically different from everyone else, like the unicorn. She differs from the rest of the world, as does the unicorn. The broken unicorn symbolizes the change undergone in Laura after being loved. It also symbolizes the change to a more ordinary person Laura makes after her heart is broken. Giving the Unicorn to Jim symbolizes Laura's broken heart that will leave with him. In The Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams, the unicorn has significant symbolism.
The glass unicorn has many of the same properties as Laura. Laura's character is distinctly glasslike. Glass is very delicate. Laura herself admits about glass "...if you breathe, it breaks!" (121) Laura has a breakable and delicate air about her.
Her very personality seems as fragile as the unicorn is physically. Glass can be dull, but when the right light shines on a piece of glass, it is beautiful. The colors sparkle and dance. Laura tends to be quiet and mild around most strangers, but when the right light or people come around, she sparkles like glass.
Laura identifies with the unicorn in that she feels that she too is physically different from the rest of the world. Laura states her feelings about the unicorn saying, "...he is my favorite one." (121) Laura is emotionally and physically crippled, although the former being the more severe. She sees her disability as the root of her problems, but is still very self-conscious. She chooses to place the blame for her shyness and innocence on her physical disability. In truth, her physical disability hinders...