Essays, poems and Stories of an African-American

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Alice in Wonderland is a lesson on change in our lives; cue for other cultural heritages to share their Alices!

As a young child, I happened to read the book "Alice's Adventure in Wonderland", a story by Lewis Carroll. I must have read that story so many times. In 2012, I watched the 1951 film: Alice in Wonderland. Today, as I was walking-part-jogging through San Francisco, I saw a poster in which Alice was poised in a karate stance ready to strike at something, at anything (perhaps ready to smash the looking glass and go after the jabberwock) with a sword. I realised Alice in Wonderland keeps adapting with time.

I wondered if this could apply to stories from the African continent.  I could also come up with stories based on African mythology and magic to develop theatrical movies or videogames similar to the ones developed based on Alice's adventure in Wonderland. The father figure will be depicted as any instructive, battle ready, big person in the home or community. The mother figure will have to be a provider and controller. The evil side will be mischievous, cunning and a shape shifter with hands that conjure up anything. The good side will be vocal, always pleading, swift on feet, with powers to counter trouble or mischief and showing up wherever there is mischief. All forms of nature will have an animate side too and will have father, mother, mischief and controller dimensions as well with powers to shift into anything.

In reading the stories to our children, father or mothers are both showing their presence and exuding a sense of security for the child or children listening to the read story.  These voice-based securities increase the bonding in families. Children who grow up in such settings with stronger bonds to each other in the families, are confident. The children understand what roles are in life and how these roles influence relations at home and the wider community. The interaction with animals creates a zoophilia in children. Also the different aspects and experiences Alice goes through provide familiarity to changes in life. So, routine, regularity and newer experiences become familiar things.

Alice attains super human powers and abilities in the story. The power to be comprehended by animals, the power for her to understand animals, the ability for animals to hold courts, the 'trans animale' one experiences from a minimal Alice to a maximum one is implanted in our children that there aspects that change within us, on our bodies and outside. That change exists within and outside. This sets the stage to embracing the world outside their home. Children grow up knowing that it is inevitable some challenges come but facing them is the way to go. They develop relationships much more easily. If I were to write a story like Lewis Carroll or Brothers Grimm, I would first have as my title: Anansi in Gondwanaland!

Alice in wonderland. Source: Wikimedia Commons

Looking through the glass. Source: Wikimedia Commons

Alice about to be hired. Source: Wikimedia Commons

A grin without a cat. Source: Wikimedia Commons

White Rabbit. Source: Wikipedia

Tea Party. Source: Wikipedia

Alice in Wonderland

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