Boys Will Be Girls

Alice in “Alice in Wonderland” is a depiction of “proper” behavior. Throughout Wonderland, she is awestruck by many strange events. Despite constantly being confused and frustrated, she maintains a calm disposition. For example, when she speaks to the caterpillar she refers to him as “sir” many times even as he speaks rudely to her. She even “swallows” her anger, “‘Keep your temper,’ said the caterpillar. ‘Is that all?’ said Alice, swallowing her anger as well as she could.” One contemporary depiction of gender expression is in the Harry Potter series. The character, Hermione, is considered “proper,” but she also speaks up for herself and makes factual arguments when she is getting frustrated with someone.


Carroll, Lewis. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. New York: Penguin, 1994.


Rowling, J.K. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. London: Bloomsbury’s Children, 1997.