After Charles Dickens and his wife separated, Dickens' got an innovative idea. He decided to print his latest book in weekly installments in order to launch his magazine All The Year Round. This novel would be based on a narrative style. The title of this book was A Tale of Two Cities. So did this new strategy make A Tale of Two Cities a classic? I think it did because of its symbolism, its imagery, its foreshadowing, and its irony.
" the success of the story depends less on the mere mechanics of the plot than on the way its themes and incidents are fused and concentrated by the choice of graphic symbols- (Fielding 198). A key feature of Dickens' writing is his use of symbolism. Symbols are objects, characters, or colors used to represent abstract ideas or concepts. Symbols add depth to a story line. Symbolism can also create suspense or foreshadow upcoming events in a story. Dickens' use of symbols in A Tale of Two Cities is part of what sets it apart from other novels.
There are several great examples of symbolism from A Tale of Two Cities. The most widely recognized symbol is the broken wine cask. When a wine cask is broken open in front of a wine shop, passing peasants quickly scramble for the wine. Their mad rush for the wine represents the poor people's intense hunger. Their hunger is both for food and for political freedoms (Jackson, Jessica E.3).
Another major symbol in A Tale of Two Cities is the knitting of Madame Defarge. According to Jackson, even on a literal level knitting represents a system of symbols. Madame Defarge stitches a registry, or list of names, into the fabric she uses, of all of the people that are condemned to die in the name of the "new republic."" On a metaphoric level, however, the knitting itself is a symbol, representing the stealthy, cold-blooded vengefulness of the revolutionaries. As Madame Defarge sits quietly she looks harmless, when in fact she is sentencing her victims to death.