Alice In Wonderland As A Criticism Towards Feminism In Victorian Era

Alice in Wonderland is an incredible literary text for use in examining feminism. It presents numerous occasions and characters who can be used to explain and understand this theme of feminism. Even in her dreams, it is easy to read the rich feminist theme that the author sort to explore using this book.

Alice and Feminism

It is interesting to note that this book was written by a man. Nevertheless, the author has a captivating narrative of feminism that is embodied in Alice. The setting of the book is the Victorian era, giving readers a perfect opportunity to know what was happening then and the phases in which women were receiving recognition or being oppressed.

  1. Alice as a Rebel
  2. Alice is presented in two ways. She is considered to be a rebel who has decided to break with tradition. She has abandoned traditional gender roles and is in a class of her own. However, people have refused to assign Carroll a similar tag for also breaking away from the stereotypical gender roles. Alice is presented in the argument at the camp as the representation of a woman who has opted to break away with traditions. However, the adjectives used to describe her would appear natural when used on men. She is regarded as assertive, curious and very active. This appears strange to everyone around considering that this is the Victorian era. Critics consider her as the reality that women should be living. She does not have to be submissive yet she can assert her position on issues. This description changes the stereotype of women in literature and society.

  3. Alice the Slave
  4. Alice is not depicted to wield absolute power. There are instances where she embodies everything that is wrong with the perception of women in the society. She depicts sexuality in women as destructive and frightening. In the description of Alice and the mushroom, the instructions given are ambiguous. She displays ignorance and lack of a probing mind. She ends up eating with little regard of what is being said will happen to her. The description is that she will ‘grow taller on one side and shorter on the other’. The book depicts a woman as a person who is controlled by the men around her. She has an unacceptable naivety that may be regarded as plainly stereotypical.

  5. Other Women
  6. The entire novel only features three other women. This is a style that must be questioned for depicting a society that is devoid of women. They are the Queen of Hearts, the Duchess and the cook. These are the worst woman characters any author can think about. They are portrayed as senseless, irrational and violent. Unfortunately, even the author seems to suggest that the violence is emanating from kitchen life and demands. This turns out to be outright stereotypical.

Alice in Wonderland is a perfect depiction of degradation of women in the Elizabethan era. The author did not even have the courtesy of presenting a single civil woman. This only serves to perpetuate the assertion that women are second rate citizens in the society.