Alice’s bodily changes

Lewis Carroll’s “Alice’s Adventure in Wonderland” displays the changes in Alice’s size to represent several different things throughout the entire book.

Alice’s decision to follow a rabbit into Wonderland allows her to experience several different changes in size. Lewis Carroll represents these changes in Alice’s body as an indication of her adolescence. After drinking from the first bottle, she says “What a curious feeling!” (Carroll 56) indicating how she is still getting used to the fluctuations her body is undergoing. She soon realizes that she is too small to get the key from the glass table. The cake that she eats next makes her grow too big, making it impossible for her to get through the only door that held a key. Desperate for help, she asks the rabbit, who runs away. Alice then begins to talk to herself, saying, “I wonder if I’ve been changed in the night? Let me think: was I the same when I got up this morning? I almost think I can remember feeling a little different.” (Carroll 60) The change that she feels indicates her growth and change during adolescence. Carroll displays Alice’s size to signify the different feelings women undergo during puberty.

Alice’s bodily changes affect her social changes that she experiences in Wonderland. After eating the cake, she began to grow bigger, which came to her as a surprise and “for the moment she quite forgot how to speak good English.” (Carroll 58) The alterations that she undergoes during adolescence also affect her socially, as she forgets how to speak proper English. Furthermore, while having a conversation with the caterpillar in chapter five, Alice “felt that she was losing her temper,” (Carroll 88) as they talked about the fluctuations in her size that she had been facing. Her bodily changes instigated her to lose her temper at the caterpillar, showing her discomfort with such a change. Dealing with the bodily changes causes dramatic alterations in Alice socially.

The changes that Alice encounters in Wonderland indicate the nature of the place itself in several different ways. Some places make Alice lose her temper, where as some make her feel confused and curious. In chapter four, Alice had grown so large that she had no option other than to stick her hand outside the window. The other bottle from which she drank in chapter one had been labeled. However, she drank the one that was not labeled, as she knew “something interesting is sure to happen.” (Carroll 75) This indicates that Wonderland is in fact an interesting place, through which Alice experiences several changes.

Lewis Carroll mentions changes in size to show the transformations that Alice’s body undergoes during adolescence. Towards the end of the story, Alice grows enormously, reflecting her inner growth. Such a growth displays how she has matured throughout the story.

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