Where the Wild Things Are Speech
Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak is an excellent choice for the AOS; belonging. The children’s book is about a little boy, Max who is mischievous with a wild imagination but he believes he doesn’t belong in the world he lives in, so he creates a place in his imagination of where the wild things are, where he believes he will belong. After a while he realises he belongs in his real world after all. It is a book which in the simplest ways shows how people can perceive belonging. The concept of belonging is shown in character development points and unique imagery.
Sendak uses imagery different from most picture books. It goes that one night, the protagonist max ‘wore his wolf suit and made mischief of one kind or another’. The images show max hammering nails into walls and pestering his small dog. Although Sendak doesn’t textually explain these shenanigans, the reader is positioned to make the narrative connections themselves. This then leads them to believe Max doesn’t feel like he belongs in his reality, he belongs with the wild things.
Imagery is extremely important in children’s picture books because it acts as catalysts for their imagination which is extremely important for their cognitive development. The author shows Max’s use of imagination in the opening scenes, when he is sent to bed without supper. The image frames in the book are small in the beginning but once Max starts creating his ultimate reality of where the wild things are the size of the illustrations grow, leaking out of the frame and eventually onto a two page spread. The effect of the leaking boarders is to emphasize that he is breaking free from the confines of his own reality. Thus positioning the reader to feel like max is finding somewhere he belongs.
Sendak creates a strong character development point through the use of emotive language. When max sends the wild...