In Joyce's "The Dead," how is the image of snow/winter used to symbolize death? "The Dead" by James Joyce

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All the various manifestations of winter are used to symbolize mortality in "The Dead." The snow, like death, falls indiscriminately on each and every one of Dublin's inhabitants. Though physically alive, they are spiritually dead, numbed into mute submission by a stagnant, priest-ridden culture. Mortality may be universal, but a deadened existence upon this earth is not. People choose to live such lives of spiritual and intellectual torpor. Gabriel Conroy hasn't really lived; yet Michael Furey, who's physically dead, has more life in him on account of the passionate intensity he displayed in his short time on earth.

Gretta believes that Michael died of pneumonia after coming to see her when it was wet and cold. In that sense, Michael's death symbolizes for Joyce what Ireland does to free creative spirits. They simply cannot live in such a culturally bleak and barren environment, cannot fully express themselves. His grave, like the whole of Ireland on that winter's night, is covered...

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