Works of literature often rely on symbolic settings to engage the reader and to aid in their perception of the text. Setting supplies the context of the novel through both time and place and is also linked to character development. Cloudstreet, written by the famous West Australian author Tim Winton, is a novel which places a strong emphasis on symbolic setting. Cloudstreet is the name given to a worn-out house of previous splendor, in which two contrasting rural families find themselves sharing not only the house, but timeless memories as well. Winton's successful use of symbolic setting has positively influenced my understanding and appreciation of this modern Australian classic. Emblematic settings within the novel Cloudstreet consist of the House, the river, Australia's natural landscape and the city of Perth. My understanding of these symbolic settings allows me to be able to better connect with the protagonists and the text as a whole. The author has created an inciting novel which draws the reader into the magnificent world of Cloudstreet.
The most symbolic setting mentioned throughout Cloudstreet is the house hence the title of the novel. Winton uses personification to form an identity for the house which is given the name, Cloudstreet. This allows the readers to see Cloudstreet almost as a character as it, breathes', cries' and weeps'. The house is the major setting of the text and is described in great detail.
It was a big, sad, two-storey affair in a garden full of fruit trees
Here and there weatherboards peeled away from the walls and protruded like lifting scabs, but there was still enough white paint on the place to give it a grand air and it seemed to lord it above the other houses in the street which were modest little red brick and tin cottages. (39)
Statements such as these allow the reader to be able to visually connect with Cloudstreet, as Winton uses such vivid descriptions. The author's use of personification and vivid...