Role Of Youth In Peter Pan

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In Peter Pan, there are many views about aging and youth. Youth and age appear in Peter Pan because of the different types of people in the book and their attitudes towards their age. Some characters are young and want to stay young, like Peter Pan, and other characters want to age, mature, and continue their lives, like Wendy Darling. Peter Pan and Wendy Darling are on opposite sides of the spectrum when it comes to their attitudes towards youth and aging.
Peter is on one side of the spectrum of views about aging, he wants to stay a child forever and is against the idea of growing up. Peter is the only child that does not grow up and he stays a child, with his baby teeth for example, forever because of his own willpower. It is easy to recognize
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Wendy is a very mature character and her views are opposite to Peter’s in that she knew that people grew up and she wanted to grow up. This attitude can be shown very early when at the age of two she realizes that she had to grow up when her mother says to her “‘Oh why can’t you remain like this for ever!’” (3). Wendy’s views on childhood are following a very Victorian mindset. Children, in the Victorian era were expected to act as mini adults. Wendy did that and more because her views agree that people have to age and that people should be adults sooner . Wendy seemed as if she just grew up quicker than everyone else and she did in the story. This can be seen when the narrator mentions that “She was one of the kind that likes to grow up. In the end she grew up of her own free will a day quicker than other girls,” (153). Wendy was mature and wanted to be an adult. This ideology of herself was reflected when she becomes the mother to the Lost Boys and Peter. She acts this way purposefully and these actions show that her attitude of becoming an adult is one of acceptance and wanting. Wendy is on the opposite side of the views on aging than Peter Pan in that she does not have extreme views, but rather accepting views that show a mature attitude toward…show more content…
When Wendy and Peter were young and went back to the Darlings Peter was very adamant about not growing up. The rest of the Lost Boys were staying and were going to grow up. Peter then told Mrs. Darling passionately ‘I don’t want to be a man...’” (150). He was very set on going back to Neverland and staying young forever. Wendy wanted to grow up and become a mother and a wife. Peter’s actions are very childish, one could see a child whining like this to stay young, while Wendy’s actions are mature and show a sophistication though she is still young. Then, later in the book, Peter goes back to visit Wendy and sees her grown up and with her child, Jane. Wendy tells Peter “‘I grew up long ago.’ and he replies ‘You promised not to!’” (158). This further exemplifies that Peter wants himself and the others around him to not grow up. Both Wendy and Peter were children once or are still. They both had experiences that shaped their views, Peter wanted to never be a man because he enjoyed his childhood and wants to be carefree while Wendy was a child and grew up earlier because of her want to take responsibility and become a mother. It seemed as if Wendy enjoyed her childhood, and despite that common experience with Peter she still wanted to go through puberty and emerge an
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