Fire plays a significant role in Laura Esquivel’s novel Like Water for Chocolate. The story is set in Mexico during the early 20th century, and fire is used both literally and figuratively throughout the novel.
On a literal level, fire is used for cooking, and it is also used as a tool for destruction. For example, when Tita sets fire to the wedding dress that her mother has forced her to wear, it not only destroys the dress but also symbolically burns away her ties to her mother.
The Importance of Fire in Like Water for Chocolate The use of fire as imagery in Laura Esquivel’s Like Water for Chocolate symbolizes the release of powerful, passionate feelings by the novel’s characters. The way that the reader views the characters Mama Elena, Tita, Pedro, Rosaura, and Gertrudis is influenced by fire (which is used to express the absence of passion), as well as coldness (which is used to explain passionlessness). It also demonstrates love, lust, and emotion being recurring themes throughout the work.
When Tita is forced to prepare the wedding banquet for her sister, Rosaura, and Pedro, the man she loves, she does so with such passion that the food she prepares ignites in flames. This passionate display is in stark contrast to Mama Elena’s orders that the food be prepared without any emotion, as emotions make food taste bad. Tita’s strong emotions are also evident when she is kissed by Pedro for the first time; she becomes so overwhelmed with passion that she faints. It is clear that fire symbolizes the release of powerful emotions in Like Water for Chocolate.
While fire is often used to describe intense passion, coldness is used to describe the absense of emotion. This is most evident in Mama Elena, who is a cold, heartless woman who does not believe in love. Mama Elena is so void of emotion that she is unable to feel love for her own daughter, Tita. Instead, she shows her love for Tita by making her into a servant in her own home and forcing her to prepare food without any emotion. It is only when Mama Elena is on her deathbed that she finally allows herself to feel love for Tita and gives her blessing for her relationship with Pedro.
The theme of love is also evident in the novel. While Mama Elena is unable to feel love, Tita and Pedro are deeply in love with each other. Their love is so strong that it overcomes all obstacles, including Mama Elena’s disapproval and the fact that they can never be together. Tita and Pedro’s love is also illustrated through the food that Tita prepares. Whenever she cooks, she does so with love and passion, and her food is said to be the best anyone has ever tasted. It is clear that fire symbolizes not only the release of powerful emotions, but also the power of love.
Like Water for Chocolate is a novel that uses fire as a symbol for the release of intense passion by its characters. Fire also symbolizes the power of love, which is a strong theme throughout the novel.
Fire, in the novel, is linked with two different ideals: passion and rebellion. The imagery of fire represents the release of a passion so strong it becomes uncontrollable. There are several examples of this throughout the text; for instance, when Gertrudis consumes the rose quail.
After she does, she is immediately filled with an uncontrollable passion for the store man and runs off with him. This passionate act of fire spreads to the whole town as they all begin to make love. Fire also appears when Tita attempts to make the wedding cake for Pedro and Rosaura. Tita puts so much passion into the cake that it sets on fire, and she is left alone in her room. Fire in Like Water for Chocolate can also be rebellious.
We see this when Mama Elena tries to stop Gertrudis and Pedro from leaving together by setting fire to the barn. However, Gertrudis and Pedro are able to escape unharmed due to Gertrudis’s quick thinking. The final instance of fire in Like Water for Chocolate is when Tita sets the kitchen on fire as a way to finally be free from her mother’s reign. After Mama Elena dies, Tita is able to live her life the way she wants and is no longer bound by her mother’s rules.
In the novel Like Water For Chocolate, by Laura Esquivel, the significance of fire is used to develop the characters and further the plot.
When Tita was forced to stay in the kitchen, she found herself with a new purpose in life- cooking. Tita had always loved to cook and be around food, but now it was her only outlet for expression. Tita found that when she cooked, she could feel closer to her mother who had passed away. Tita would often have memories of her mother while she was cooking and these memories would make her feel happy and content. However, there were also times when the memories were too painful and Tita would start to cry.
Cooking wasn’t just about memories for Tita, it was also about creating new memories. Every time Tita cooked, she put a little bit of herself into the food. As a result, people who ate her food would feel closer to her and understand her in a way that no one else could. Tita used her cooking to express her love for Pedro and Gertrudis and to show her anger and resentment towards Mama Elena.
Fire is also used as a symbol of passion. Throughout the novel, Tita experiences many passionate moments related to fire. These moments include the time when she sets the kitchen on fire while making quail in rose petals, the time she almost burns down the house while making Wedding Cake, and the time she sets Gertrudis’ dress on fire during her Quinceañera. In each of these instances, Tita is overwhelmed with emotion and she ends up doing something reckless.
The novel Like Water For Chocolate is a story about love, passion, and food. The author Laura Esquivel uses fire as a symbol to represent the intense emotions that the characters feel throughout the novel. Fire is also used to represent the bonds that are created between people when they share food. When Tita cooks, she is not just creating food, she is creating memories and connecting with people in a way that no one else can.