Symbolism World Lit

Topics: Odor, Olfaction, Ghost Pages: 4 (1370 words) Published: September 13, 2011
How symbolism and imagery are used to explore the haunting of Laurent and Grenouille in Therese Raquin and Perfume, respectively.   
  There is always something haunting one, whether we’ve lied to someone, done something we strongly regretted or not sure of something. In these two books, there’s a clear presence of haunting, however the way it is shown to the reader is different. One has a lot to do with guilt and fright as this is the key element in the haunting of Laurent in the novel Therese Raquin, while In Perfume it is shown with curiosity and eventually manipulates someone’s brain to the extent, that that person does anything in order to achieve his dreams. In this essay I am going to try to explain how this haunting of two characters Laurent and Grenouille is explored through symbolism and imagery.  

  Symbolism is widely used by both authors, especially in Therese Raquin. Laurent’s scar is an important symbol in Therese. Laurent is bitten by Camille, leaving a scar and after Camille’s death, the scar is the actual symbol of Camille and in many ways brings the dead man alive, at the same time can represent a symbol of Laurent's guilt.  At times it seems as if Camille lives in that bite which is placed ''on the right of Laurent’s neck, just under the ear''. It is an unusual scar too, as it doesn’t seem to go away and the pain varies from time to time.  Whenever Laurent starts thinking of Camille or even sees his ghost, his bite would feel ‘’like a hot iron on his skin’’, and before Laurent even noticed camille would reappear in his mind and bring a burning sensation to the scar as “the blood had rushed suddenly to his neck and his neck was burning’’ as Camille haunted Laurent, but more so by the guilt as ‘’He had almost forgotten the bite, and now he was terrified to find it on his skin’’ emphasizing the fright of Laurent. The choice of diction that the narrator chooses to describe the scar and the effect of the bite makes the scar itself more vivid in...
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