Manga Study Guide: Barefoot Gen/Symbolism (eg wheat field, sun)
Symbolism is used very often in stories, especially in visual sources such as manga. They can provide a dramatic shortcut to explaining a lot more than just writing what you are trying to tell, it gives the reader a visual understanding rather than someone writing the words down. Texts wouldn’t give the reader as much understanding nor the visual impact as a Manga can give to the reader. An action, person, place, word, or object can all have a symbolic meaning; this is usually when the author wants to show emotion rather than expressing it. Visualizing gives more emotion and understanding to the reader compared to written texts. The example below shows the sun rising between the clouds; which is a symbolism of hope.
The baby at the end of the story symbolizes strength