Format of Presentation

15-minute lecture to be presented the Saturday of the conference

Abstract

The research presented on Peter Pan offers and introspective look into one of the key elements of children's literature. Maturation. Children's literature often tries to express societal expectations of children as it relates to the process of maturation; however, if this is true, how is Peter Pan relatable? How can Peter experience maturation when he is encapsulated in a perineal state of childhood? These questions were the basis for the research, and they are the questions that will be answered throughout the presentation.

On this surface this story seems to be about a child who will never grow up; however, the evidence through close textual analysis suggests that Peter, although unable to grow up in physical stature, does experience emotional maturation. Although Peter feels as though he is in control of his maturation process by rejecting the idea of entering into adulthood, the research shows that Peter may in fact long to grow old. This is a story of self-realization. This story is relevant to our own human experience because it is a creative outlet that simultaneously allows children to reconcile with their anxieties about not being able to control their aging process, while also giving adults the ability to examine their anxieties of never fully maturing.

Department

English and Modern Languages

Faculty Advisor

Elizabeth Reimer

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Peter Pan: The Boy Who Tried to Grow Up

The research presented on Peter Pan offers and introspective look into one of the key elements of children's literature. Maturation. Children's literature often tries to express societal expectations of children as it relates to the process of maturation; however, if this is true, how is Peter Pan relatable? How can Peter experience maturation when he is encapsulated in a perineal state of childhood? These questions were the basis for the research, and they are the questions that will be answered throughout the presentation.

On this surface this story seems to be about a child who will never grow up; however, the evidence through close textual analysis suggests that Peter, although unable to grow up in physical stature, does experience emotional maturation. Although Peter feels as though he is in control of his maturation process by rejecting the idea of entering into adulthood, the research shows that Peter may in fact long to grow old. This is a story of self-realization. This story is relevant to our own human experience because it is a creative outlet that simultaneously allows children to reconcile with their anxieties about not being able to control their aging process, while also giving adults the ability to examine their anxieties of never fully maturing.

 

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