Eve's Diary by Mark Twain
In Eve’s Diary, by Mark Twain, the first woman on Earth writes a supposed diary about her life in the Garden of Eden. The story is based on the creation legend from the Bible, and almost all the events in Eve’s Diary are identical to it. Although the short story seems to be simply a retelling of Adam and Eve from Eve’s perspective, the diary has a much deeper meaning hidden far beneath the surface. After reading it once or twice, one might think that this covert message would have something to do with sexism and gender equality, because Adam did not treat Eve very kindly when she attempted to befriend him.
In reality, the story focuses more on the difference in points of view of the world for children and adults. At the beginning of the diary, Eve wrote about how she first felt arriving on Earth and what she observed around her. When she described what she saw in the world and what she thought about it, it immediately seemed somewhat naive and ignorant. In one example, when Eve described the moon, she said that “the moon got loose last night, and slid down and fell out of the scheme”. In reality, the moon did not “fall out of the sky”, but actually simply disappeared from our field of vision since the Earth is constantly revolving.
Eve saying this fact shows that she knows little to nothing about the Earth and represents a modern child. Now, as children people are interested in everything and try to figure out what happens if this or that happens. This is exactly similar to Eve, since she did many experiments to see what something does, even if it is dangerous, such as when she created fire and burned herself. Since the majority of the story revolved around Eve, the main meaning centered around the “child’s” point of view. In contrast, Adam, the first man on Earth, thinks very differently than Eve.
When she attempts to befriend him, he at first accepts her companionship, but later tries avoiding her and not treating her very well. On the surface, this seems like sexism, but in truth, Adam couldn’t stand her eagerness to know everything and how she is interested in all details of the world. In the short story, Adam is quite a bit older than Eve, since in the creation story, Eve was made from Adam’s rib. This means that Adam has already seen most things throughout this Earth, and her excitement is not relatable anymore. This relationship is comparable to an adult and an infant. To the child, everything is a mystery, like how Eve saw the world, and he or she wants to try to comprehend everything around them, either by staring at it profoundly or by experimenting with it physically.
The adult, however, is similar to Adam. They have seen almost everything they could in the world, and it bores them. Whenever a child tries to play with an adult or accidentally performs a stupid action, the elder usually becomes annoyed or does not understand why the infant is so incredibly peculiar, which is also the reason why Adam tried avoiding Eve. In Eve’s Diary, the details of the world from mainly Eve’s perspective and a sample of the world from Adam’s perspective demonstrate the differences between a child and an adult. Whilst the child believes everything is interesting and waiting to be explored, the adult thinks that the world is a boring place and don’t see why the infants are so infatuated with anything. However, the hidden theme is more than just the differences, but since the vast majority of the diary is from Eve’s or a “child’s” perspective, Mark Twain most likely aimed to show how children should keep their belief on exploring the unknowns of the world.
People always start out their lives interested in many things, since Earth is a new place, and the surroundings are intriguing. Despite this, people always lose this interest as they grow up and soon life seems to be boring. However, there is always something of interest in the world. As Nina Dobrev said, “Even though you’re growing up, you should never stop having fun.”