Jumanji and other thoughts
I was reading 'Jumanji' to my children last night, a story that I've never actually read before, but I have seen the movie. Anyway, I picked it up at the library, and as I was reading it, it struck me that this book was a thinly disguised metaphor for life. As you play the game, various disastors befall you (lions, monsoons, etc.) The only way to restore things to any kind of normalcy is to keep playing the game, and reach the 'golden city' at the end. It does not take a genius to spot the 'endure to the end' message, and equate the golden city with heaven, and the jungle with earth. I feel a FHE lesson coming on....... Of course, I don't think it's supposed to take a genius too see this. This is a children's book, after all. But I feel stupid that I did not notice this when I saw the movie many years ago. It made me wonder what other children's stories were metaphorical, that I simply took at face value when I was young. And so, because I am too lazy to do research, I ask that you, the bloggers of the world, simply tell me. What other children's books have you found that have a hidden meaning? Oh, and do you point it out to your kids, or let them simply enjoy the story, and let them notice it when they're older? (Clearly, the Chronicles of Narnia - this one I know, I'm not a complete idiot). But I also read 'Make Way for Ducklings' to my kids just after Jumanji, so I was thinking about this, and I thought "No hidden meaning here, this is just a story about ducks, and about being nice to others." Anyway...what do you think? Is 'Where the Wild Things Are' really about communism or something?