Research Proposal of Peter Pan example

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Peter Pan: Research Proposal

A research paper on J.M. Barrie’s Book Peter Pan will focus primarily on the themes of childhood and adulthood as they are understood by the author. It will also explore how symbolism contributes to the author’s philosophical message and expands on the mentioned themes. The working thesis of the paper is as follows: childhood is presented as controversial state of mind, which has both positive and negative aspects. On the one hand, children’s world is full of magic and has no limitations, while adult’s world is more down to earth and devoid of fantasy.

On the other hand, however, childhood is related to ignorance that borders on “heartlessness”, a concept introduced by Barrie. By using the character of Peter Pan, a boy who does not want to grow up, the author suggests that growing up is a necessary step for maturity of emotions and ability to feel compassion.The paper will explore several characters but will focus more on the main ones: Peter Pen and Wendy because their comparison is a resource for understanding the author’s message. It will investigate the main traits of Peter related to his immortality and eternal childhood. His courage, even recklessness, desire to act spontaneously, and so on, are all those qualities which the author believes to be associated with childhood. Life is a play for him with low risks, he remembers no past and thinks of no future. On the one hand, this makes his life more intriguing than that of an adult. Wendy and her companions taste this life too, and for some time it looks attractive for them.

However, in the course of time Wendy realizes the emptiness of such life and self-deception of Peter. Though she is quite young, Barrie attributes wisdom to her, which makes her be more realistic and down-to-earth than Peter and more capable of affection. Overall, her character undergoes more significant evolution in the course of the adventures in Neverland and it makes her realize the true value of a family. At the same time, she realizes the necessity and inevitability of growing up, and moreover, she starts understanding why it is important to grow up. She wants to impose her discoveries on Peter, but despite all his courage he is scared of vulnerability that adulthood brings.The paper will specially focus on symbolism that the author uses to make his message resonate with the audience, both that of children and adults. Such symbols as Peter’s shadow, crocodile and Neverland will be explored, and their relationship to the themes raised by the author. The genre of the book makes it necessary to use symbolism and fantasy, but the paper will intend to explain that the meaning of these fairy tales images is more than about entertaining the reader. The philosophy that stands behind these symbols will be a primary focus of the paper.

For example, if Peter’s shadow as a symbol is taken, the explanation …

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