The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame

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What are the symbols in "The Wind in the Willows?"

What are the symbols in "The Wind in the Willows?"

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There are a number of symbols in The Wind in the Willows, many of which act as a satire of early twentieth-century England. With many of the characters, such as Badger, Rat, and Mole, symbolizing an upper-class ideology, the novel explores themes such as consumerism, greed, and class struggle.

Throughout the novel, Toad is known to be a wealthy playboy who becomes obsessed with his ego as well as material objects, namely his home and his automobile. He is crafty, though highly arrogant, and serves to act as a symbol for the folly of man. He crashes his automobile and is consequently imprisoned, but he later escapes jail, remains in disguise, and tricks a poor fellow into selling a horse for far less than its worth. He is morally ambiguous and symbolizes the psychological id, the selfish and indulgent side of mankind.

Perhaps the most important symbol in the novel occurs in the chapter "The Piper At the Gates of Dawn," in which Mole and Rat begin an adventure to find a lost Otter...

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