The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
The bonds between family members and the nature of the family itself are central themes of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. Individuals are only parts of familial structures; entire families may be needed in order to re-order the world in the way that it must be shaped. In this novel, families have definite gender roles and different people will have different responsibilities depending on their circumstances. Individual men may be useful members of society; individual women are often dangerous, especially when they are powerful. Children are extremely important and may possess a special power all their own.
Questions About Family
- Why does it matter that the four children in this story are brothers and sisters? How would the book be different if they were simply four friends?
- Describe the relationship between Mr. Beaver and Mrs. Beaver. Are they meant to represent the "ideal" Narnian family? Explain your answer.
- Why are there several important bachelors in this story? Consider especially the Professor and Mr. Tumnus.
- Note that Aslan is described as the Son of the Emperor-Beyond-the-Sea. What do you think this means? How does it increase our understanding of Aslan to think of him as a son?
Chew on This
By making Peter, Susan, Lucy, and Edmund siblings instead of just friends, C.S. Lewis develops them as a small community, rather than individual heroes.
In The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, single men are kindly and generous, but single women are dangerous and threatening.