CARROLL, Lewis, Alice in Wonderland
Essay by Stephan Milanović, 1° ESO A
I’ve chosen two themes for my essay, growing up and curiosity, as they are themes running throughout the story.
It goes without saying that the book Alice in Wonderland is based on a dream Alice is having. It is well known that most of the time we dream of things we think and experience during the day. She is learning the rules of adult life as she is getting older, and when she finds herself in Wonderland she discovers a bewildering new set of rules. One of the examples from the book could be the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party. Alice may have realised that adults follow some certain rules unquestioningly. She sees in the Tea Party a possible reflection of following rules without questioning why they are being followed. She also would have realized that adults normally have all the power, especially in the Victorian era, when children knew they should be seen and not heard. Alice knows that the Queen of Hearts is most definitely in charge and she has the right to chop people’s heads off for the slightest of mistakes and Alice’s opinion is not taken into consideration.
Curiosity is a major theme that drives the story at the start, urging Alice to follow the White Rabbit down a rabbit hole, quite a bizarre thing to do under normal circumstances. She is curious to find out what lies beneath, but as the old saying goes: “curiosity killed the cat”. She could be endangering herself though she doesn’t stop to consider it. Another example could be when she tries to get to the little garden behind the closed door; curiosity is making her want to know what lies on the other side.
Generally curiosity is associated with childhood and can seem to be opposing the theme of growing up. However, both themes are present while growing up.