Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll, a story about a little girl and her adventures in a dream-like place called wonderland, has been a beloved children’s story for over one hundred years. Though viewed by many as a simple children’s tale, if it is taken into a little more depth one will find that is a brilliant satire on the English system of government. Indeed, Alice in Wonderland is a brilliant novel written by a brilliant author.
The main character of this novel is Alice. Throughout the story she has conflicts with many of the characters along with herself. Her main conflict is to return home from Wonderland and to become an adult. While she is in Wonderland she is faced with many other, not so important conflicts. Most of them are choices that may lead her to people or places that she might or might not want to meet or see.
Throughout the story there are many supporting characters that both help and hinder Alice during journey through Wonderland. The first character that Alice first comes in contact with is the White Rabbit. As a character he is always in a rush, this is made apparent throughout the story. Alice first sees him while he is on the way to Wonderland. She chooses to follow him, and she falls down a rabbit hole, thus finding the entrance to Wonderland.
The only other character that was influential in my opinion was the The Queen of Hearts. The Queen is a very bitter person. She made everyone around her extremely nervous, including Alice. Anyone that does not appease her is sure to be decapitated. She also introduces Alice to the Mock Turtle and the Gryphon.
Alice meets many other characters while in Wonderland. Most of them do not play a big role in the story. Some of this characters are as follows: Bill the lizard, the Caterpillar, the Mad Hatter, the March Hare, the Door Mouse, the Duchess, the Cheshire Cat, the King of Hearts, the Gryphon, and the Mock Turtle. These characters don’t play any major roles except to entertain the reader and make the story more interesting. This story, as you may have guessed, takes place in a world called Wonderland. This is a fantastical land that can be considered almost dream-like. In this place animals can talk, one can grow from three inches to a mile high in a matter of seconds, mythical creatures exist, and a deck of cards portray the royal army. In using this place as a setting, it allowed Carroll to be much more creative and also allowed him to express his ideas in a way that was easily hid. For example, the caucus race, a race that has no beginning and no end yet everybody wins, portrays Carroll’s thoughts on the English government system. Another example would be the trial against the Knave of Hearts. In this “trial” nothing was accomplished, everything was important evidence, and the sentencing came before the final verdict of the jury. This would have been a satirical play by Carroll on the English judicial system.
The main theme of Alice in Wonderland is to remain a child as long as possible, for only children can have such adventures. Once you reach adulthood, you loose you imagination. This novel was written in a very satirical style. It seemed that everything that happens to Alice could be applied to something from English society of that time. It also seemed that most of the characters, excluding Alice, spoke in some sort of rhyme or repeated rhythm.
In conclusion, Alice in Wonderland is a very well written novel. It’s talking animals and live gryphons are enough to entertain any type of children, while the underlying points of the book are enough to make an adult smile. This book was meant for people of all ages from all runs of life. It took quite a genius, such as Lewis Carroll to write such a masterpiece.
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