Review of A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle

By | August 3, 2011

Recently, I watched a very telling discussion with my favorite writer, bell hooks.

In this very powerful and straightforward interaction she shared the brilliant truth that the “work of ending domination “ is the “work of love”.

This point was brought to my attention again during the rereading of this wonderful book. A Wrinkle in Time is primary concerned with the ending of domination.

It is clear throughout this book that the only way that the Murry’s will survive and help others in the process is recommitting on a deeper level to the care of one another.

The brilliance of this book is the significance that is given to what many perceive as “faults”. It is their quirkiness, their difference, which will allow for love and redemption. At one point Mrs. Whatsit states: “Meg, I give you your faults.” (p.145). These faults, anger, impatience and stubbornness, allow the protagonist to survive, at a most crucial moment, and save her family as a result.

Unlike typical tales of heroes and their quests, Meg is never alone.

Through parental love and acceptance, she like her brothers, have been taught that they are more than enough. It is this nurturing upbringing that allows each of the children to take on the unthinkable.

The seemingly ubiquitous IT.

The introduction of this seductive and seemingly innocuous being is exhibited by happy children and their families smiling and enjoying life. Like a number of things that appear wonderful and yet turn out the complete opposite later, the smiles and joy hide a deeper and more sinister reality.

What is so frightening about this concept is that it is seductive to both the reader as well as the characters who encounter it.

However, as a result of being granted the gift of healthy emotional resources, the young protagonists are not so easily tricked. The children are taught to see with not only their eyes but with their minds, intellect and emotions.

They will not be duped.

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