A Critical Study on the Literary Representations of Disability in R.J.Palacio’s Wonder


  • K.Vimalan Department of English and Foreign language , Bharathiar University


Treacher Collins Syndrome, teasing, Auggie’s inner turmoil, literary representation, treatments of disabled persons.


Auggie, a twelve-year-old boy born with a genetic disorder, that affects proper growth of his body parts due to a rare craniofacial condition, which occurs in a ratio of 1: 50,000 among the children. This condition may cause severe malformations of the face and will affect its whole structure including, misplaced mouth and jaws, contorted ears and eyes. The protagonist, Auggie suffered from this kind of disorder named Treacher Collins Syndrome. Due to this, he was homeschooled from his birth in New York. As his mom, Isabel Pullman wants him to attend the regular classes in the school, she admitted him in Beecher Prep school. There he feels strange first, and to assist him, his teacher arranged some students to support him and to help him in order to practice him to the school environment. There, Auggie feels uncomfortable, as his own colleagues looked at him differently. Summer, a girl became a friend of him, on observing his characteristics, which are genuine. His own sister, Via feels uncomfortable to be with him and started to see him like others. Auggie’s inner turmoil and his sufferings, his thirst to act as normal, like other children are sketched by Palacio in an exemplary way. After sometime, everyone apologizes their mistakes to Auggie and befriended with him back. The objective of this research paper is to critically analyze, how the disability affects Auggie’s life and how it has been represented by Palacio. This research paper also attempts to create awareness among its readers, regarding the disability and to insists them not to involve in any activity of deriding and treating the disabled persons with contempt.


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CDC. “Learn about Disability and Health.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 20 Nov. 2019, www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/disabilityandhealth/index.html.

Palacio, R. J. Wonder. Penguin Books, 2019.