View on Symbolism in ‘The Juniper Tree’’ Sad Story

October 30, 2021 by Essay Writer

The story of ‘‘The Juniper Tree’’ is a fairy tale by Grimm Brothers, it is a sad story full of trauma, repression and suspense. This is a story of boy whose mother died and his father married another women. Step mother has insecurities and do not like the boy because it reminds her of other women. She doesn’t want to see that boy alive and father has no idea about it. Psychologically this story is full of fear, repression and trauma of a child who has to go through step mother’s torture. Therefore, it is a story of child abuse in a family.

There are different symbols used in the story like, a tree which is a symbol of hierarchy. Furthermore, a tree is symbolic reference to the mother. It is spiritual and intellectual development to death and rebirth. It also indicates that to the fruit shade and protective nature of tree have caused them as a feminine symbol. In the story from a psychological perspective a tree symbolise boy’s mother’s presence that died. It also, indicates empty feeling of boy who has no one for care and protection. The problem of the story is that it is related to child abuse. In a Lecture for his English 101 class, Tomasz Michalak explained that psychologically it is not appropriate because it is a hindrance in child’s growth and development. The carelessness of father toward his son can be noticed in the story of ‘‘The Juniper Tree’’. He is not responsible and do not interact much to the child. A step mother behaves very unkindly to the boy. ‘‘She drove him place to place with cuffing and buffetings’’. It shows that from psychological point of view it is a problem for a child in his developmental stages and relationship with parents. It takes a child into fear and trauma.

Apple is used in a story as a symbol psychologically it indicates variety of meanings. It can mean love, knowledge, wisdom, joy and death. It can be a sign of fertility and sin. In the story it is an important symbol because the story begins with an apple tree and boy and his mother buried under the apple tree after death. A boy was lacking love of his mother and father. Apple also shows love in between boy and his sister which is repressed in the story due to mother. There is another problem in the story that there is no support for the boy in story of Grimm Brothers. Moreover, from a psychological point of view there is a fear of women. She does not like the child because it reminds her presence of another women and she do not want the memory of sharing of her husband with anyone else. Her way of treating the boy is worse and discriminative because a child does not know anything. It shows that she has some kind of psychological problem that she is misbehaving and comparing herself with a child who cannot even compete with her.

There many symbols used in the story to express different things. Fire is used in the story as a symbol. It represents destruction regeneration in psychology. It is a mediator between vanishing and appearing form. In a Lecture for his English 101 class, Tomasz Michalak gave lecture about psychoanalysis that psychologically our desires and unconscious conflicts give rise to insecurities and dominant thoughts. It can be seen in story that step mother is very dominant and she always tortures the boy for her satisfaction, desires and disliking. At the end of the story she gets killed by the spirit boy in a bird.

In a nutshell, ‘‘as you sow so shell you reap’’. Mother got punished for killing the boy. This story is deeply distressing and painful. Children can experience emotion shock from this story. This story is about the growth disturbance of a child, no one can be so rude and cruel to an innocent child. This is not normal from a psychoanalytic point of view.      


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