Psychoanalytic Theory is a branch of literary criticism which was built on the principles of psychoanalysis developed by Sigmund Freud This is most often done by treating the work as a dream and interpreting the content to find the hidden meaning, achieved through a close analysis of the language and symbolism. Sexual Symbolism Alice practically begs to be psychoanalyzed; it is easy to treat it as a dream, because it IS a dream.
Hire Writer Carroll ridiculed the perfection for which his fellow Victorians strove, and created this symbolic scene with a message: The King is meek and submissive, while the Queen is domineering, bloodthirsty, and ruthless.
These two characters mock the royal families of England, in that the kings, including Henry VIII and Richard the Lionhearted, were the rulers of their empires, and their wives were docile and weak.
The King and Queen of Hearts are satirical representations of a normally male-run society upon which Britain was based. Carroll ridiculed a belief that only men can rule by creating the King and Queen in reversed roles. Along with symbolic characters, Carroll also employed satirical scenes that represent and ridicule common Victorian traditions.
These include the rules of conversation, manners, and social gatherings. Alice is often confused by the rules of speech and conversation in these two fantastical worlds. As seen during her interaction with Humpty Dumpty, she merely tries to compliment Dumpty by calling him a pretty egg.
Furthermore, when participating in a civil conversation, when one compliments another, the response is positive. Humpty Dumpty threw all the rules of conversation and manners Alice normally followed above-ground out the window. His blatant disregard for decency when interacting with another makes a mockery of the strict rules a Victorian followed in society.
By creating Dumpty as a rude, but honest, character, Carroll successfully mocked the members of Victorian society and the rules by which they abided.
The characters have a deeper representation than thirsty rabbits during mating season and a lethargic mouse. Alice represents Victorian society, rules, and regulations one must follow.
The inhabitants of Wonderland fear these representations because many do not follow these policies of conversation nor common courtesies and manners.
Furthermore, Alice represents a structured lifestyle — one that leaves little room for easygoing attitudes or fun. Additionally, the inhabitants of Wonderland are unable to comprehend the English system of justice.
Ciolkowski, author for Genders Magazine, believes that, according to Alice, the characters of Wonderland cannot comprehend English justice. More simply put, the creatures of Wonderland represent the brutes the English civilized with their manners, justice system, and social customs.
The absence of religion in the lives of the inhabitants of Wonderland belittles the church, in that religion is not necessary to civilization.
In a similar fashion, Carroll recants beliefs held by Christianity, including the belief in Creationism. The most obvious is the transformation undergone by the baby into a pig.
By no means did magic change the baby into a pig, nor did it grow up to become one. Instead, it evolved from one species to another. Furthermore, there are scores of sexually symbolic characters and places, which Alice encounters during her adventures.
These include Humpty Dumpty, who, as an egg, represents female fertility. The tunnels through which Alice falls are representative of the l canal; the doors she unlocks symbolize the change a young girl undergoes from adolescence to womanhood.
The keys with which Alice opens these doors are phallus-shaped.
The relation between keys and doors leads to the conclusion that a man is necessary to the womanhood of a female. Carroll is believed to have included these scenes in part because of his relationship with Alice Liddell, and in part because he was scorning the genophobia, or fear of sex, present in society, and telling his readers that sexual symbolism is ubiquitous and unavoidable.
These attempts can be seen in her encounters with the Mad Hatter and March Hare. Sadly, though, Alice partook in the same rudeness by inviting herself to the table. Her attempts to civilize the members of the chaotic tea party fail because she herself has not been civilized by Victorian manners.
Reference How to cite this page Choose cite format:An Analysis of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland The following text is a small part of a project from: Jerry Maatta, HII, Katedralskolan, Uppsala, Sweden; March Characters.
See a complete list of the characters in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and in-depth analyses of Alice, The Cheshire Cat, and The Queen of Hearts. At a Glance. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland grew out of a story Carroll told to Alice Liddell.
The first version of the story was much shorter and written in longhand, but Carroll later expanded. Literary analysis involves examining all the parts of a novel, play, short story, or poem—elements such as character, setting, tone, and imagery—and thinking about . Welcome to the LitCharts study guide on Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.
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