How far is Lewis Carroll’s “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” a feminist literary work?
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland is a archetypal children’s atypical accounting by Lewis Carroll in 1865. It tells a chance of a adolescent babe alleged Alice, who fell through the aerial aperture which led her into a new amusing apple alleged “Wonderland” that consists of aberrant and adapted creatures she has never encountered before.
This cardboard will acknowledgment the assay catechism “How far is Lewis Carroll’s “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” a feminist arcane work?” by interpreting the atypical in a feminist approach, it explores how anniversary actualization emboies feminist ancestry in Alice in Wonderland.
Feminist arcane criticism is anxious with the representation of gender in abstract and “the means in which abstract (and alternative cultural productions) reinforce or attenuate the economic, political, social, and cerebral abuse of women” (Tyson 83). It analyses the letters apropos delicacy and adulthood which looks at how it reinforces assumptions based on gender.
The accent of attractive at Alice in Wonderland through a feminist’s angle is because the time the author, Lewis Carroll, wrote the book in 1865 which was during the Victorian era and the role of women was usually bound to the house, accomplishing affairs and accouterment affliction to the family. In affiliation to that, the changeable characters of the book will be analysed whether they associate to the roles of women in the Victorian era or the columnist advised to argue the academic roles of a changeable instead. This cardboard will additionally focus on the accord of Lewis Carroll and his own protagonist, Alice, and how she has empowered women’s rights throughout her chance to Wonderland by the use of the Heroine’s Chance archetype.
Victorian Women in Wonderland
Lewis Carroll wrote “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” in the year 1865 during the Victorian era (1837-1901) which was beneath the administration of Queen Victoria, wherein “she came to be apparent as the actual archetypal of conjugal adherence and calm virtue.” (Abrams, 1). A woman’s abode in Victorian Britain was at home, actuality centered and mainly absorption on family, motherhood and ambitious to be a admirable woman: actuality beautiful, classy, elegant, and polite.
The appellation “Angel in the House” was a accepted Victorian angel of the ideal woman who should be adherent and abject to her husband. An Angel has characteristics of actuality passive, powerless, graceful, charming, self-sacrificing, affectionate and overall-- pure. Approaching Lewis Carroll’s “Alice in Wonderland” in affiliation to the Victorian era, the capital focus is to actualization how the changeable characters (Alice, the Duchess, the Cook and the Queen of Hearts) were portrayed in the chance and whether or not they depicted the aforementioned roles of women in the Victorian era.
Alice is the advocate who was set up to be a representation of the Victorian little girl, as she acts and thinks carefully according to the ethics of the Victorian era. As Auerbach has stated, “Alice herself adjoin a apple out of ascendancy by attractive for the rules and aside her lessons, stands as one angel of the Victorian accepted child.” (Auerbach, 31) because her chance in Wonderland is advertent a accomplished new apple for her and gluttonous rules for her own safety. Despite that she’s abandoned a little girl, she has approved characteristics of actuality a Victorian woman in the story.
From the way she was dressed, she was depicted as a adolescent babe in a short-skirt with petticoats and short-sleeved dress akin with blockhead socks which is a accepted actualization during the Victorian era back “Victorian era actualization was continued or abbreviate dresses with aprons for girls.” (Debbie and Oscar, 2018). Alice is apparent as abnegation herself from academic ancestry and “is not trapped by the borders of roles and requirements” (Irwin and Davis, 2009) by absolution the apple that she occupies as she larboard her sister and followed the aerial instead which led to her falling to Wonderland.
This angel is replaced by one of a adolescent adult who finds a new changeable subjectivity not afflicted by the association in which she has been raised. Lewis Carroll advised to present an innocent adolescent woman who is yet not acquainted and acquainted of her civic apprehension of actuality a woman who is adapted to be feminine and additionally active abandoned to fulfil gender roles. But some critics accept that it is not the author’s acknowledgment of ungendered adolescence but the acquiescent delicacy because it is a chance about a little girl.
The Duchess, defining the appellation itself, is the appellation of a woman who has a actual aerial amusing rank, or who is the wife of a duke, or the actuality of that rank. However, how she was portrayed in the book is absolutely altered from how a amazon is defined. She was a mother of a adolescent as apparent in the phrase, “the Amazon was sitting on a three-legged stool in the middle, nursing a baby;” (Carroll, 81). Through the description of the Amazon from the book, the Amazon is a mother for she is captivation and nursing a babyish back Alice aboriginal saw her in the kitchen.
Nevertheless, the role of a mother in the Victorian era plays a huge aspect as to it is the capital purpose of women at that time yet the Amazon was portrayed as acrid and agitated and not the archetypal caring mother to its child. As apparent in “singing a array of abate to it as she did so, and giving it a agitated agitate at the end of every line” (Carroll, 84-85), lullabies are declared to be abstracted and abatement for the baby’s account however, the Amazon handled her babyish by afraid it berserk as if it wasn’t a actuality whom she beared.
Continuing afterwards the aboriginal ballad of her lullaby, she “kept casting the babyish berserk up and down, and the poor little affair howled” (Carroll, 85) which is an affirmation of how she abject the baby. Although, not abandoned to her babyish that she approved her aggressiveness but additionally back Alice, who is aloof a little girl, came and access her yet responded in a actual abrupt and aloof way.
This imposes how women during the Victorian era adeptness accept acquainted apropos their roles which is actuality centered in motherhood and as a aftereffect of that, it seems like accepting accouchement is a charge and is their obligation as allotment of their “role”. Relating it to how the Duchess’ accomplishments and attitude appear children, abnormally her baby, it was a accountability for her because it is article that women were afflicted to fulfill; whether in Wonderland or in the absolute apple during the Victorian era.
The Cook, additionally accepted as the Duchess’ maid, was the additional actualization that Alice has encountered during the affair with the Duchess. And back the attendance of a maid in a domiciliary was accepted during the Victorian era, maids are generally perceived as a actuality whose adherent in their duties in the domiciliary and in allegory to actuality the Duchess’ maid, she is the adverse of a Victorian maid as she is contrary to the Duchess.
When Alice said, “There’s absolutely too abundant pepper in that soup !” (Carroll, 81), it shows that she is not the blazon of actuality who performs her duties actual able-bodied in the domiciliary to amuse the Duchess’ needs but rather makes battle in the domiciliary calm with the Amazon and at one point she starts “throwing aggregate aural her adeptness at the Amazon and the baby” (Carroll, 83) which adds up to a added anarchic environment.
Through her actions, she carries a alienated behavior appear the Amazon and additionally defies alternative college authorities such as the King during the board scene. The way she behaves appear the college authorities is doubtful for a Victorian charwoman and for women in general. As “her adventuresomeness to baffle the authority, and it is an attack on the allotment of the lower chic to agitate the oppression/repression bifold accompaniment in the amusing structure” (Ren, 2014) which shows that how she was portrayed in the book is a alienated act during the Victorian era. The Duchess’ maid is a representation of a banal woman amount of the Victorian era.
The Queen of Hearts, the aftermost changeable actualization that Alice has interacted with and back the aboriginal time Alice has met her, she started with her best iconic band which is ““Off with his head!” or “Off with her head!” about already in a minute” (Carroll, 122), and through that phrase, she is represented as a able and angry woman who has the accomplished akin of ascendancy as all the cards were afraid of her which led to because the Queen of Hearts as the adversary of the story. She is characterized as a absolutist and backbreaking force in Wonderland by the connected threats she fabricated of beheading anybody that disobeys her or refuses to amuse her demands.
And if it were to analyze to Queen Victoria during the Victorian era, both abstracts are Queens, and adjudicator of a nation. However, the Queen of Hearts is not a blameless representation of a able ascendancy as some accept that Queen Victoria was. Some had anticipation of her as a burlesque of Queen Victoria. Although she isn’t the archetypal queen who’s humble, nice and kind; she represents women empowerment with her angle due to her conjugal accord with her husband.
The roles of Victorian association are astern in this brace area she is the one that makes the decisions whilst he is portrayed as absolutely dependent, aflutter and submissive. And beneath her control, it seems like the King has been portrayed as a actuality who has beneath adeptness than the Queen of Hearts and abject to her which can be interpreted to his own adulthood and ascendancy of adeptness are gone which is actual abundant the adverse of what Victorian England promoted. Even admitting the Queen of Hearts is perceived as a agitated amount of authority, she still represents a woman in adeptness and disregards the stereotypes of actuality in a affectionate association area abandoned men accept the adapted to rule.
Overall, these fabulous changeable characters were absolutely acclaimed on how they act aloft the story; Alice as the protagonist, the Amazon as a mother, the Cook as a maid, and the Queen of Hearts as an adversary ruler. Despite actuality accounting in the Victorian era, Carroll advisedly chose to accomplish these characters behave in this way. In accordance of the time back the book, Alice in Wonderland, is written, comparing the assuming of the changeable characters to the women abstracts of the Victorian era has apparent that Lewis Carroll’s ambiance hasn’t afflicted his autograph as it didn’t absolutely based aggregate he’s accounting to the Victorian society. There were similarities for stereotyping characters to the role of a Victorian woman and differences in attitude, opposing the qualities of a Victorian woman presented in the book.
Being the columnist of the book, they consistently accept abounding ascendancy of all the fabulous characters they’ve created that abide in a story. How the characters are actuality portrayed, the accident of contest and scenarios, and every little detail of the chance is all based on the author’s alternative if he or she wants to change the artifice or how the breeze of the chance will go. However, if we attending at the accord of Lewis Carroll and Alice, the capital advocate actualization in his book, Alice in Wonderland; one acceptance could be fabricated in which the abstraction of Alice is in the calmly of its author, Lewis Carroll, through anecdotic the way he has adapted Alice in assorted sizes physically and actually in the book.
At first, the abrupt actualization of the aerial out of boilerplate to abduction Alice’s absorption can be interpreted as to Lewis application the rabbit, which symbolizes “a assurance that activity will be all the added admirable from here”, to allurement the little babe abroad from absoluteness wherein the afterward alternation of contest is her falling into the aerial aperture that leads her to addition branch which is the Wonderland.
The actualization of the canteen can be questioned to what is its capital purpose and what is Carroll’s intention?
The aftereffect of bubbler the canteen on Alice is that it makes her admeasurement abate than the boilerplate and the block is to accomplish her admeasurement acutely bigger. Overall this makes her so abashed and absent about what is happening. “-oh dear, how abstruse it all is!” (Carroll, 19) and “I charge be Mabel afterwards all” (Carroll, 21) shows that she doesn’t apperceive who she is anymore, she adeptness be Ada, Mabel, or Alice, as said from her monologue. It shows how Carroll was able to ascendancy her physically by alteration her admeasurement with the acceptance of canteen and cakes that has admirable engravings “tied about the close of the canteen was a cardboard characterization with the words “ DRINK ME” beautifully printed on it in ample letters” (Carroll, 9) and the block “EAT ME” were beautifully apparent in currants.” (Carroll, 13) to ambush Alice on bubbler and eating.
Because of her transformation, back she encountered the Pigeon, she was perceived as a serpent because of her continued neck, and the aberrant amount she had was absolutely amazing for her to be advised as human. One estimation was fabricated in her transformation into acceptable a serpent; “it is accompanying to the Biblical serpent in Genesis, who tempts Eve to eat the banned fruit. This estimation equates Alice with the role of temptress, conceivably absorption Carroll’s (possible) allurement to actualization Alice as a animal object”, (Millikan, 2011).
Also, it represents the author’s assay of Alice as a animal article and classifying her actuality as an article of the author’s animal desires rather than a accomplished actuality which is generally accomplished by a woman back again up until today’s generation. Due to several changes and transformation accomplished by Alice, the account “as she remembered the cardinal of changes she had gone through that day” (Carroll, 72) shows how abundant she has afflicted and adapted above the accustomed of how she has been for she had gone through a lot of changes aural aloof a day.
The ascendancy of Lewis Carroll on Alice fabricated her lose her own cocky in Wonderland because of the abrupt and camp actualization of things to transform her admeasurement physically as it can appoint a submissive-dominant accord of a men and women.
This can be acclimated to actualization how some women adeptness accept acquainted actuality in a accord or in a marriage, wherein men are the ones who are ascendant and women are the ones actuality beneath controlled. And the acumen why the appellation has been labeled as “Lewis’ Marionette”, is because the analogue of a baby according to Oxford (2019) is “a actuality who is calmly manipulated or controlled”. Therefore, it can be interpreted as Alice became a boob of Lewis by giving her acceptable words and nice things to allure the little girl.
Joseph Campbell’s Hero’s Chance is accepted for its cerebral assay of the classical allegory blueprint that break bottomward the belief into a basal structure, assuming the cerebral adeptness of the hero classic and the Hero’s Journey. However, in 1990, Maureen Murdock wrote The Heroine’s Journey: Woman’s Quest for Accompaniment as a acknowledgment to Joseph Campbell’s archetypal and is believed to be added adapted for women’s activity journeys.
When she showed it to Campbell in 1983, he reportedly said, “Women don’t charge to accomplish the journey. In the accomplished fabulous journey, the woman is there. All she has to do is apprehend that she’s the abode that bodies are aggravating to get to.” Joseph Campbell perceived the hero’s chance as a chance appear the accompaniment of the hero, and in a affectionate association in which men accept absolute qualities compared to ladies.
Be that as it may, it appears that either Campbell appears to be aloof in women’ convalescent qualities that had been confused to them through enculturation or those that had never been apparent as accurately theirs, or he was addled by the absoluteness that the belief that he was allegory included macho figures. At any rate, Murdock got to be abiding that women were included as a ambition the actualization bare to accomplish at the end of the chance in adjustment to complete the hero’s journey.
However, according to Alice Meichi Li, “The capital aberration amid the hero and the heroine’s journey, is back a hero is appetite to become a master, a charlatan is appetite for adequation and normality.” (Li, 2014) but for a heroine’s journey, “A charlatan is advance into a apple gone mad. Aggregate has addled and angry upside bottomward and heroines are disturbing to acquisition their way home. They feel that they are the abandoned sane ones.” (Li, 2014) in which we can chronicle to Alice’s adventures in Wonderland.
She fell bottomward to a absolutely new apple and as the Cheshire Cat has said “we’re all mad here. I’m mad. You’re mad.” (Carroll, 90) is a affidavit that the apple she fell into is a apple that has gone mad, area aggregate she knew didn’t administer to Wonderland. Because of Alice actuality the abandoned one who came from addition realm, every animal in Wonderland is aberrant and camp for her, authoritative herself abandoned the one sane actuality in Wonderland.
As said earlier, generally women presented in belief are usually the capital ambition of the protagonist. They were consistently bare to be adored by addition whom alleged as the “knight in their animated armor”. However, Alice’s actualization assuming was added applicative to Murdock’s heroine’s chance rather than Campbell’s Hero’s Chance not abandoned because she is a female, but because she portrayed as a changeable who had the characteristics of what it's like actuality a macho and changeable at the aforementioned time.
Alice has apparent her weakness by defective the adeptness to do things on her own, arrant and allurement for help; however, she has additionally apparent her strength, that she is able of the carelessness that existed in Wonderland. Heroes tend to acquisition a adept or a trainer who will advice them in developing their abilities and acceptable able in alertness for their final goal; yet for heroines, they tend to appointment bodies or characters who are manipulators and either ambush them or use them. And it is present back Alice met the Cheshire Cat, who is arch and tries to dispense Alice by authoritative her anticipate that they’re all mad in Wonderland.
Usually, a hero comes from an accustomed apple and already knows how the apple works and has advisers to advice beat any obstacles. A hero’s chance is the chance of addition who has privilege. However, for the heroine’s journey, behindhand if the advocate is macho or female, the charlatan does not alpha their chance accepting privileges. The advantaged hero has the adeptness to be the adept over his or her own existence, accustomed that they accept a coach to advise them to advance their capabilities as well.
But for the underprivileged heroine’s journey, it starts from a absolutely new apple all alone, again never had the befalling to be accomplished but rather develops their personalities and backbone throughout the action of their journey. And in the story, Alice needs to defeat the Red Queen, who is actual able for her case, and shows how the patriarchy turns women adjoin anniversary alternative in a way. It’s actual attenuate that they tend to advice their adolescent women out and instead see them as a antecedent of competition.
The heroine’s chance is altered from the hero’s chance because of the chance that the advocate experiences. Abstract and feminism is evolving and because of the heroine’s journey, women now accept the befalling to actualize and accomplish their own chance instead of aloof actuality an end-point for the hero’s chance as a ambition and conceivably “maybe eventually it will be accustomed for heroines to go on a hero’s journey. She’ll access the ideal ability that a hero can find.” (Li, 2014).
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