Allegory is a discern of speech wherein abstract thoughts and ideas are described in phrases of characters, figures, and events. It may be employed in prose and poetry to tell a tale, with a motive of coaching or explaining an concept or a principle. The objective of its use is to educate some sort of a moral lesson.
Difference Between Allegory and Symbolism
Although an allegory uses symbols, it's far extraordinary from symbolism. An allegory is a complete narrative that involves characters and events that stand for an abstract idea or event. A symbol, on the alternative hand, is an object that stands for every other item, giving it a specific that means. Unlike allegory, symbolism does no longer inform a tale. For instance, Plato, in his Allegory of Cave, tells a tale of how some people are ignorant, whilst at the same time other people “see the light.” Plato’s allegory stands for an concept and does not inform an real story.
Examples of Allegory in Everyday Life
Allegory is an archaic term, that's used especially in literary works. It is difficult to spot its prevalence in everyday life, despite the fact that these days we do find examples of allegory in political debates. The statement of former U.S. President George W. Bush become allegorical while he used the term “Axis of Evil” in referring to a few countries considered a hazard to the world. He later used the term “allies” for the ones countries that could wage battle against the “Axis.”
Examples of Allegory in Literature
Example #1: Animal Farm (By George Orwell)
Animal Farm, written via George Orwell, is an allegory that uses animals on a farm to describe the overthrow of the last Russian Tsar, Nicholas II, and the Communist Revolution of Russia before WW I. The movements of the animals at the farm are used to reveal the greed and corruption of the revolution. It also describes how powerful human beings can alternate the ideology of a society. One of the cardinal guidelines on the farm is this:
“All animals are equal but a few are more identical than others.”
The animals on the farm constitute exceptional sections of Russian society after the revolution.
For instance, the pigs constitute individuals who came to power following the revolution; “Mr. Jones,” the owner of the farm, represents the overthrown Tsar Nicholas II; at the same time as “Boxer” the horse, represents the laborer class. The use of allegory in the novel lets in Orwell to make his position clear approximately the Russian Revolution and disclose its evils.
Example #2: Faerie Queen (By Edmund Spenser)
Faerie Queen, a masterpiece of Edmund Spenser, is a moral and religious allegory.
The suitable characters of book stand for the diverse virtues, even as the awful characters represent vices. “The Red-Cross Knight” represents holiness, and “Lady Una” represents truth, wisdom, and goodness. Her dad and mom symbolize the human race. The “Dragon,” which has imprisoned them, stands for evil.
The assignment of holiness is to assist the truth combat evil, and consequently regain its rightful place inside the hearts of human beings. “The Red-Cross Knight” in this poem also represents the reformed church of England, fighting towards the “Dragon,” which stands for the Papacy or the Catholic Church.
Example #3: Pilgrim’s Progress (By John Bunyan)
John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress is an example of spiritual allegory. The regular sinner, Christian, leaves the City of Destruction, and travels in the direction of Celestial City, wherein God resides, for salvation. He unearths Faithful, a accomplice who allows him on his manner to the City. On many instances, many characters, together with Hypocrisy, Apollyon, Mr. Worldly Wiseman, Obstinate, and Pliable try to discourage or stop him from achieving his aim. Finally, he reaches the Celestial City, carried by using Hopeful’s faith.
The moral learned via this allegory is that the road to Heaven is not easy, and it's miles full of obstacles. A Christian has to be inclined to pay any fee to acquire salvation. A guy is complete of sins, however this does not prevent him from accomplishing glory.
Function of Allegory
Writers use allegory to add exclusive layers of meanings to their works. Allegory makes their testimonies and characters multidimensional, so they stand for something larger in which means than what they literally stand for. Allegory permits writers to put ahead their ethical and political factors of view. A careful examine of an allegorical piece of writing can supply us an perception into its writer’s mind, how he views the world, and the way he wishes the sector to be.
Popular Literary Devices
- Ad Hominem
- Deus Ex Machina
- Double Entendre
- Flash Forward
- Half Rhyme
- Internal Rhyme
- Line Break
- Non Sequitur
- Pathetic Fallacy
- Poetic Justice
- Point of View
- Red Herring
- Tragic Flaw