Search for Identity in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Oliver Twist

Search for Identity in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Oliver Twist

Length: 1771 words (5.1 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview


Alice from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Oliver from Oliver Twist represent the characteristic Victorian children who are naturally good and appeal to the sentiments of the reader when facing difficult situations that aid in finding who they are. The children are required to decide between two conflicting ideas such as childhood and adulthood in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and even good versus evil in Oliver Twist while they search to find where they belong in the natural order of society. Death and horrible outcomes hover around Alice and Oliver as they are shoved into different social situations without their approval. Alice and Oliver’s identity crisis, while they are at a stage of limbo, are evident in the obstacles they must face including repressive new secondary environments which parody and mirror real life struggles imposed on them, being vehicles to aid in adult’s favor as they pull the children in varying directions and the inability for Alice and Oliver to take control of their lives their own hands.
In Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, the secondary environment behaves as a parody of Alice’s primary world or the larger, universally known, typical outline for Victorian society. Alice’s concrete perspective of the world clashes against the madness in Wonderland. Alice continues to maintain purity in a corrupt society found in the disturbed natural order of Wonderland when she is challenged by different obstacles that make her question her integrity.

Alice still abides by the typical Victorian ideals she was taught and becomes a surrogate adult in Wonderland. At home, however, she is still considered just a child and behaves as such. This confusion in the role Alice will play within the social hierarchy i...


... middle of paper ...


...n her dream state showing her mature ideals that should have been accepted by her sister or Lewis Carroll because it exhibits her adult intentions and growth. Oliver is also pushed between two distinct world of good and evil without participating or being fully aware of his surroundings. He allows himself to exist in the limbo between the two opposite principles because he behaves as a submissive child. Significantly, these children behave as pawns in the adult world.



Works Cited

Auerbach, Nina. "Alice and Wonderland: A Curious Child."Indiana University Press. 17.1 (1973): 31-47. Print.
Carroll, Lewis. Alice in Wonderland . 3rd. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2013. Print.
Dickens, Charles. Oliver Twist. New York: Random House of Canada, 2006. Print.
Rackin, Donald. "Alice's Journey to the End of Night." Modern Language Association. 81.5 (1966): 313-326. Print

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The Many Layers Of The Alice Books Essay

- ... It is important to keep in mind Carroll’s close relationship with children when examining the novels, as it helps the reader to understand how Carroll was able to enter the mind of a child so as to depict such a life-like character of Alice. This verisimilitude in the character of Alice, while it was inspired by an actual child, is essential in the tales, as it allows the reader into the mind of a child, making him aware of the child’s thoughts and better understand the reasoning behind their actions (Maatta)....   [tags: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland]

Powerful Essays
1599 words (4.6 pages)

Essay on alice and wonderland

- Finding the Child in Us All Lewis Carroll’s classic Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland has entertained not only children but adults for over one hundred years. The tale has become a treasure of philosophers, literary critics, psychoanalysts, and linguists. It also has attracted Carroll’s fellow mathematicians and logicians. There appears to be something in Alice for everyone, and there are almost as many explanations of the work as there are commentators. It may be perhaps Carroll’s fantastical style of writing that entertains the reader, rather than teaching them a lesson as was customary in his time....   [tags: essays research papers fc]

Powerful Essays
1869 words (5.3 pages)

Essay on Alice in Wonderland: Children’s Story or Fairytale?

- The story of Alice in Wonderland, by Lewis Carroll, is a captivating story that follows a young girl Alice, as the protagonist, on her journey down a rabbit hole and through Wonderland. The text itself is often defined as a children’s story, rather than a particular type of folkloric literature, yet when reading the text from a perspective other then that of a children’s book, the reader notices many folkloric symbolism that become apparent throughout the story. When analyzing the text, it can be argued that Alice in Wonderland is in fact a fantastical fairytale, encompassing an abundance of important fairytale elements....   [tags: Literary Analysis ]

Powerful Essays
1683 words (4.8 pages)

Alice : The Lessons Of Wonderland Essay

- ... However, unlike Susina’s notion that Alice’s changing sizes was her adapting to her environment, Alice seems genuinely distressed by the identity crisis symbolized by her size changes. When conversing with the Caterpillar, Alice says that she is not herself, which she attributes to changing sizes repeatedly, yet he dismisses her concerns (Carroll 40-41). Despite this dismissive tone and attitude, which she encounters in other characters like the Gryphon, Alice continues to talk back to those who want to dominate her, even aggressively disagreeing with the Queen’s nonsensical reasoning....   [tags: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Victorian era]

Powerful Essays
1365 words (3.9 pages)

The Male Characters in Alice in Wonderland Essay

- It is amazing that nearly all critics of Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland focused solely on the character and adventures of the female protagonist/hero. A somewhat right-wing and didactic critique at Decent Films writes, “Alice embodies the gender feminist narrative of vibrant young girls losing their mojo as they come of age in patriarchal society.” The woman’s magazine, Jezebel, while praising the movie as “refreshingly feminist” seemed to notice only that the hero who fights against the forces of evil is a woman....   [tags: Alice in Wonderland Essays]

Powerful Essays
1703 words (4.9 pages)

Alice, Wonderland, By Lewis Carroll Essay

- The book Alice in wonderland was published in 1865, by Lewis Carroll, this book has become part of many adults and children’s lives and has been a cherished fairy tale for many years. The story begins with a young girls dream called Alice, and the adventures that are about to take place in the unconscious mind of Alice, due to her starting to drift off to sleep by becoming bored of her sister reading her a novel with no pictures. (Carroll,1992). However, since it’s traditional origin, many generations have been eager to find hidden meanings in the tale....   [tags: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland]

Powerful Essays
1304 words (3.7 pages)

Quest for Identity in the Victorian Era Essay

- Quest for Identity in the Victorian Era         "'Who are you?' said the caterpillar" to Alice (Carroll 60).  This was a question she could not answer.  Why doesn't Alice know what constitutes her being?  Humans desire completeness, and a solid identity.  Up to the age of Darwinism, that void was filled by religious faith.  But with the emergence of Charles Darwin's theories on natural selection and survival of the fittest, Victorians were reevaluating their paths to righteousness.  Without God as a foundation, what were life's rules?    Peter Bowler argues in Charles Darwin: The Man and His Influence that the old road to salvation had been damaged by one of Darwin's greatest triumph...   [tags: Literature Essays Literary Criticism]

Powerful Essays
1884 words (5.4 pages)

Essay on Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Caroll

- Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Caroll Based on the novel Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Caroll, Alice, the heroine of the story is a curious, imaginative, strong- willed, and honest young English girl. Her adventures begin when she falls asleep by the side of a stream in a meadow and dreams that she follows a White Rabbit down his hole. Her curiosity has made her ventured the world she never been before, entered each doors that she able to open, she even trying hardly to figured out how to open the doors she couldn’t opened....   [tags: Alice Wonderland Caroll]

Free Essays
1168 words (3.3 pages)

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland: Lewis's Underground Love Adventure Essay

- "Down, down, down" falls Alice through the Rabbit hole, leaving far above her the real world, and so, starts her nonsensical underground adventure. Through her conversations with the strange creatures, and the queer situations that she faces, she hopelessly searches for order, rule, and reason. However, Alice fails and surrenders to the unexplainable actions of these creatures. Unlike Alice, readers who know about Lewis Carroll's life- the creator of this chaotic world- are able to explain, and understand a lot of the aspects that he included in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland....   [tags: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland]

Powerful Essays
1131 words (3.2 pages)

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There

- Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There: For Adults Only.   "'Curiouser and curiouser!'cried Alice" (Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland 9). At the time she was speaking of the fact that her body seemed to be growing to immense proportions before her very eyes; however, she could instead have been speaking about the entire nature of Lewis Carroll's classic works Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There....   [tags: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland Essays]

Powerful Essays
3311 words (9.5 pages)