Symbolism in Kiss of the Spiderwoman and No One Writes to the Colonel

Powerful Essays
Topics: Symbol, Love
An Analysis of Symbolism
In
Kiss of the Spiderwoman
And
No One Writes to the Colonel

Lara Blacklock
English AI
Colegio Internacional de Caracas

“It’s a sin to take the food out of our mouths to give it to a rooster” (Garcia Marquez 31). This essay portrays the different types of symbolism throughout the novels Kiss of the Spiderwoman by Manuel Puig and No One Writes to the Colonel by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. The fighting cock is the dominant symbol in the former, representing both positive and negative matters; such is the case of hope in bringing some improvement to the Colonel’s living conditions while for his wife, being a reminder of their son’s death along with the repression they live in due to political corruption. In the novel Kiss of the Spider Woman, symbols such as the films, the food and most importantly, the Spider Woman, represent the characters’ peculiar relationship transitioning from a neutral one to a sexual and affectionate one. Both these novels are linked by the political corruption in their environment while the emotional atmosphere revealed by the symbols make them complementary to each other.
In No One Writes to the Colonel, the linking of symbols and images represent the inner tensions of the characters throughout the novel. The main symbol, the fighting cock, is an interesting one in its ability to depict contrasting sentiments as one being. The first one is the hope the Colonel attains from it because of the value it possesses for the town. If the cock wins in the cock fights, the poverty they find themselves struggling with would have a chance to improve. This gives the cock a special treatment where ironically, it will be put first than them. “When the corn is gone we’ll have to feed him on our own livers.” (Garcia Marquez 11) Evidently, the Colonel and his wife are eating insufficiently, unable to afford more corn for the cock, let alone food for themselves.
The Colonel however maintains a positive attitude towards the



Bibliography: Tittler, Jonathan. "Odd Coupling." Manuel Puig. Print. Box, Ben. "Symbols and Imagery." Ed. The South American Handbook and Grant & Cutler Ltd. Print. 58-82. García, Márquez Gabriel, and Márquez Gabriel García. No One Writes to the Colonel;. London: Cape, 1971. Print. McNally, Terrence, Manuel Puig, Manuel Puig, John Kander, Fred Ebb, and Harold Prince. Kiss of the Spiderwoman. Toronto, Ontario: Live Entertainment Corporation of Canada, 1993. Print.

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