‘One of the Hardest Things to Accept in Classic Texts Is Their Limited or Dated Attitudes to Women.' Discuss with References to Any of the Core Texts and/or a Sequel or Prequel.

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‘O Wendy lady, be our mother.' (Peter Pan:1911:101)

‘A lady to take care of us.'(Peter Pan:1911:89)

Women have been idealized in a rather traditional way in Peter Pan. They are primarily seen as nurturers only in the personification of mothers. It seems that Barrie, referring to the personalities of Mrs. Darling and her daughter Wendy- are essentially pure, angelic and sacrificing motherly figures. They are sought after by all male roles including the pirates and the boys- (both good and evil) in the novel who are in great need for a motherly presence.

Mrs. Mary Darling is the most idealized female character in Peter Pan. ‘She is the epitome of motherhood.' (A Critical Analysis of Peter Pan, A Petrusso, Gale, 2000). Barrie seems to consider a woman firstly as a mother as portrayed in the novel. She is immaculate: polite and beautiful; without desires or ambitions; her entire world revolves around her children. In this novel, it is evident how women are infact only seen through a veil of expected and forced perfection rather than the personal individuality they ought to be given. As a clichéd perspective, dated as well as classic- the female has limited empowering role as she is succumbed or best shown to suit the task of a typical housewife and mother. In this ideology a woman is best seen as mother, devoted and living only for her children.

In Peter Pan the main female character Wendy herself finds the idea to play the role of mother to these needy boys ‘frightfully fascinating‘ (Peter Pan 1911:101) even though she is ‘only a little girl'(Peter Pan 1911:101). She rather completely matures into a version of Mrs. Darling herself paying tribute to the general norms of society at that time: she does as is expected of a lady- only so strongly is she affected by these rules she is rather proud as she 'swelled with pride' (Peter Pan 1911:122) when Hook had realized that the boys had 'found a mother'(Peter Pan 1911:122) and she realized the title of...
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