Jabberwocky | Study Guide

Lewis Carroll

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Course Hero. "Jabberwocky Study Guide." December 7, 2020. Accessed January 25, 2022. https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Jabberwocky/.


Course Hero, "Jabberwocky Study Guide," December 7, 2020, accessed January 25, 2022, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Jabberwocky/.

Jabberwocky | Symbols


Lewis Carroll's symbols are pulled from his own life and experiences, and many of the characters he puts in his novels are based on people he has met. "The Jabberwocky" is built on a known and familiar poetic and storytelling structure. Its symbols are unique yet still able to paint a broad picture.

The Jabberwock

The Jabberwock is a huge monstrous beast that is the antagonist to the boy. The poem is a tale of good versus evil, and the Jabberwock represents evil. The boy is warned about how terrible the Jabberwock is but still goes to face it. The Jabberwock is the monster to the hero and represents the evil that the hero has to confront. The boy's triumph over the monster mimics the typical heroic narrative. However, the cyclical nature of the poem suggests that there is more evil to come. The uniqueness of the Jabberwock as an invented creature highlights Carroll's imagination and inventiveness, even though the symbol of a monster as a purveyor of evil is not entirely unique in itself.

The Boy

The boy is not only the poem's protagonist but also a symbol of the hero. By remaining nameless and ageless, he transcends time which allows readers to put themselves in his shoes. The boy is also a symbol of the force of good standing up against the forces of evil. In this way Carroll presents the lesson of standing up against the evil and horrors that are a part of life.

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