Wednesday, September 18, 2013
WHAT A CHARACTER
When I think of characters that stand out and are memorable I immediately think of the Mad Hatter. In Alice's Adventures in Wonderland the Hatter's character immediately made an impression on me. What I love about the Mad Hatter is the fact that he is such a small character in the story, but his characteristics are so easily remembered. He is as significant to the story as the Dodo is, but nobody remembers the Dodo's characteristics and significance to the story like they do the Hatter's. So what makes this minor character so memorable? What catches me as a reader is the way he is characterized. He turns Alice's hopeless condition of being lost into something almost sadly comedic. His overpowering characteristics that so perfectly define the insane meaning of the word "mad" so effectively catch readers' attentions. A small little hatter perpetually stuck in "tea-time," who enjoys frustrating the poor protagonist Alice; what's not to love. The Hatter is almost like Alice's antithesis, the incongruity between the two characters provide a comparison that enhances the reader's knowledge and understanding of both characters through their reactions toward each other and the actions they take in the presence of one another. As I earlier stated, most readers don't remember minor characters, so the fact that the Mad Hatter is almost as recognizable as Alice shows how well Lewis Carroll was able to characterize him.