The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

Peter, Alice, and Dorothy: The Children Who Don’t Want to Grow Up. College

In the children’s classic Peter Pan, by J.M. Barrie we are introduced to the concept of never growing up, embodied in the young title character. This refusal to grow was a result from denying his eventual responsibilities as an adult. Throughout the three novels Peter Pan, Alice in Wonderland, and The Wizard of Oz, there is a reoccurring theme where the children of the story leave their normal lives that require responsibility to escape to a new world that has become lawless and lacks forms of structure. By seeing the world without structure, the children are forced to step up and mature into contributing persons that appreciate how their preconceived worlds function. Between the three stories, there is a very noticeable lack of parental figures. Peter Pan presents the Darlings, Alice her sister, and Wizard Dorothy’s aunt and uncle. While these parents are good caregivers, they do impose some form of responsibility to their children, which leads to the ultimate escape into the dream world.

In Peter, we experience a fiasco in the Darling household, right before Wendy, John, and Michael make their way to Neverland. We are introduced to a scene where Michael, the youngest, is refusing to take his medicine. His father begins to...

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