Since it is a celebration of a woman’s month, lets look at one of the films that embrace the victory of women. Alice in wonderland.
Alice shows the interpretation of not an ideal Victorian young woman but rather a rebellious, confused and unpredictable teenager. During this Victorian period, Alice’s character would have been seen as a disgrace and disrespects her tradition. The author, Carroll, poses intentions to show how women can either choose their own paths or to conform to what society (Victorian) finds acceptable. Auerbach also identifies Alice as not the presentable example of a Victorian girl. (Carroll, 1968: 63).
Alice is more intrigued in the fantasy world and is uncomfortable with the classic appeal of looking formal and secure. She has little memory of her childhood which seems to be wiped out and she believes that whatever she can remember is from a dream as it is too unreal to believe. She is confused and lost in the beginning of her journey but eventually overcomes obstacles that make her a new version of what a woman is.
The Victorian world was rather boring and formal for Alice’s imagination; the fantasy world excited her and is different from what she knows. She feels stagnated in a world of submissiveness that her mother tries to prepare her for and to marry like any other Victorian girl. The decisions she makes from abandoning the altar and following The White Rabbit leads her to the unknown and her rise of curiosity builds up once she falls in the hole. She shocks the crowd that she left behind, which is not seen as appropriate for a female to reject and question the “male domination”. Making her own decisions expose the truth that females are capable of thinking and doing as they please just like men do. (Rickard, 2010).
Despite the actions of Alice rebelling against Victorian society, she is conscious of this and reality hits her once she makes sense of what is happening around her with her friends in Underland. She becomes conscious and determine to continue the journey that seems dangerous and more suitable for a male figure. Instead she shows the growth of female consciousness from feeling inferior, lost and uncertain to bravery, ambition and self-confidence.
There are some stereotypes throughout the story. The Victorian society chose to not acknowledge that women are capable of acting and thinking for themselves, they had to conform to what the male species wanted or desired. Females were rather thought of as weak and less important. Society has played a role in carrying on the tradition of being submissive and turning it into a norm. At the end of the day women have the decision to both act and think with their own desires like Alice or to be what society expects them to be. (Thessayist, 2011).
Rickard. E. (2010). Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland is Almost a Great Feminist Fairytale. Available: http://www.genderacrossborders.com/2010/03/21/tim-burtons-alice-in-wonderland-is-almost-a-great-feminist-fairytale/
Thessayist. (2011). Alice In Wonderland- Reinforcing Victorian Gender Stereotypes. Available: http://www.articlesbase.com/literature-articles/alice-in-wonderland-reinforcing-victorian-gender-stereotypes-4569416.html