The paperweight, symbolizes human connection as it passes through the hands of many of the important characters. It all starts with Clark, who purchases it at a museum gift shop and then decides to give it as a gift to Arthur and Miranda at their dinner party. In the weeks before the collapse, Miranda decides to give the paper weight back to Arthur. But Arthur has no memory of it, and to him it is a symbol of clutter and the material things that he tries to escape before the end of his life. Seeking to rid himself of possessions, Arthur immediately gives away the paperweight to Tanya, who then gives it to a young Kirsten as a distraction after Arthur’s death. This journey between all the different people during this difficult time becomes a physical representation of the interconnectivity and it follows the chance connections of the novel’s main characters and represents the influence they have on one another and the way that fate seems to operate in Station Eleven. The paperweight represents beauty to Kirsten because she sees it as the most beautiful object she has ever seen. A block of glass with a storm cloud inside, the weight is at once stunning and completely useless in the post-collapse world. After the collapse, she continues to carry it around with her for this reason, despite the fact that it is dead weight and utterly impractical. In this way, the paperweight represents the novel’s appreciation of art and beauty as something that, while not practical for survival, is essential for doing more than surviving.
The symbolism “Station Eleven” by Emily St. John Mandel is plentiful and the few examples listed above just barely express some of the impacts of this novel. The symbols in this novel are portrayed in such unique ways that even though most of the symbols were quite clear. The fact is that throughout the novel symbolism can be seen during the whole span of the