Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
First American edition, 1964
|Illustrator||Joseph Schindelman (first and revised US editions)
Faith Jaques (first UK edition)
Michael Foreman (1985 edition)
Quentin Blake (1995 edition)
|Genre||Children's fantasy novel|
|Publisher||Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. (original)
Puffin Books (current)
|Followed by||Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator|
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is a 1964 children's book by British author Roald Dahl. The story features the adventures of young Charlie Bucket inside the chocolate factory of eccentric chocolatier Willy Wonka.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory was first published in the United States by Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. in 1964 and in the United Kingdom by George Allen & Unwin in 1967. The book was adapted into two major motion pictures: Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory in 1971, and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory in 2005. The book's sequel, Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator, was written by Roald Dahl in 1972. Dahl had also planned to write a third book in the series but never finished it.
The story was originally inspired by Roald Dahl's experience of chocolate companies during his schooldays. Cadbury would often send test packages to the schoolchildren in exchange for their opinions on the new products. At that time (around the 1920s), Cadbury and Rowntree's were England's two largest chocolate makers and they each often tried to steal trade secrets by sending spies, posing as employees, into the other's factory. Because of this, both companies became highly protective of their chocolate-making processes. It was a combination of this secrecy and the elaborate, often gigantic, machines in the factory that inspired Dahl to write the story.
- 1 Plot
- 2 Missing chapters
- 3 Reception
- 4 Adaptations
- 5 Editions
- 6 References
- 7 External links
Mr. Willy Wonka, the owner of the Wonka chocolate factory, has decided to open the doors of his factory to five children and their parents. In order to choose who will enter the factory, Mr. Wonka hides five golden tickets in the wrappers of his Wonka chocolate bars. The search for the five golden tickets is fast and furious. The first four golden tickets are found by the gluttonous Augustus Gloop, the spoiled and petulant Veruca Salt, the gum-addicted Violet Beauregarde, and the TV-obsessed Mike Teavee.
A boy named Charlie Bucket lives in poverty in a tiny house with his parents and four grandparents. His grandparents share the only bed in the house, located in the only bedroom. Charlie and his parents sleep on a mattress on the floor. Once a year, on his birthday, Charlie gets one bar of Wonka chocolate, which he keeps for many months. One day, Charlie sees a fifty-pence coin (dollar bill in the US version) buried in the snow. He decides to use a little of the money to buy himself some chocolate before turning the rest over to his mother. After unwrapping the bar of chocolate, Charlie finds the fifth golden ticket. The next day is the date that Mr. Wonka has set for his guests to enter the factory.
In the factory, Charlie and Grandpa Joe enjoy the sights, sounds, and smells of the factory, and also encounter the Oompa Loompas who have been helping Wonka operate the factory since he found them living in their own poverty and fear in Loompa-land, as well as their strong desire for Cocoa beans. The other kids are ejected from the factory in comical, mysterious and painful fashions. Augustus Gloop falls into the hot chocolate river when he wants to drink it, and he is sucked up by one of the pipes. Violet Beauregarde impetuously grabs an experimental piece of gum and chews herself into a giant blueberry. Veruca Salt is determined to be a "bad nut" by nut-judging squirrels who throw her out with the trash. Lastly, the television lover, Mike Teavee, shrinks himself into a tiny size.
With only Charlie remaining, Willy Wonka congratulates him for "winning" the factory and after explaining his true age and the reason behind his golden tickets, names Charlie his successor. They ride the great glass elevator to Charlie's house and bring the rest of Charlie's family to the factory.
Continued in Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator.
As "lost chapters" found reveal, in the initial, unpublished drafts of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory nine golden tickets were distributed to tour Willy Wonka's secret chocolate factory and the children faced more rooms and more temptations to test their self-control. Some of the names of the children cut from the final work include:
- Clarence Crump, Bertie Upside, and Terence Roper (who overindulge in Warming Candies)
- Elvira Entwhistle (lost down a trash chute, renamed as Veruca Salt)
- Violet Glockenberry (renamed Strabismus and finally Beauregarde)
- Miranda Grope and Augustus Pottle (lost up a chocolate pipe, combined into the character Augustus Gloop)
- Miranda Mary Piker (renamed from Miranda Grope, became the subject of Spotty Powder)
- Marvin Prune (a conceited boy)
- Wilbur Rice and Tommy Troutbeck, the subjects of The Vanilla Fudge Room
- Herpes Trout (renamed Mike Teavee)
"Spotty Powder" was first published as a short story in 1973. In 2005, The Times reprinted "Spotty Powder" as a "lost" chapter, saying it had been found in Dahl's desk, written backwards in mirror writing (the way Leonardo da Vinci wrote his journal). This chapter describes Spotty Powder, which looks and tastes like sugar, but five seconds after ingestion, bright red pox-like spots appear on faces and necks, so children who eat Spotty Powder do not have to go to school. The spots fade on their own a few hours later, similar in concept and purpose to the Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes "Skiving Snackboxes". After learning the purpose of Spotty Powder, the humourless, smug Miranda Piker and her equally humourless father (a schoolmaster) are enraged and disappear into the Spotty Powder room to sabotage the machine. Soon after entering, they are heard making what Mrs Piker interpreted as screams. Mr Wonka assures her (after making a brief joke where he claims that headmasters are one of the occasional ingredients) it was only laughter. Exactly what happened to them is not revealed in the extract.
In an early draft, sometime after being renamed from Miranda Grope to Miranda Piker but before "Spotty Powder" was written, she falls down the chocolate waterfall and ends up in the Peanut-Brittle Mixer. This results in the "rude and disobedient little kid" becoming "quite delicious." This early draft poem was slightly rewritten as an Oompa-Loompa song in the lost chapter, which now puts her in the "Spotty-Powder mixer" and instead of being "crunchy and ... good [peanut brittle]" she is now "useful [for truancy] and ... good."
"The Vanilla Fudge Room"
In 2014, The Guardian revealed that Dahl had cut another chapter ("The Vanilla Fudge Room") from an early draft of the book. The Guardian reported the now-eliminated passage was "deemed too wild, subversive and insufficiently moral for the tender minds of British children almost 50 years ago." In what was originally chapter five in that version of the book, Charlie goes to the factory with his mother (instead of his grandfather, as originally published). At this point, the chocolate factory tour is down to eight kids, including Tommy Troutbeck and Wilbur Rice. After the entire group climbs to the top of the titular fudge mountain, eating vanilla fudge along the way, Troutbeck and Rice decide to take a ride on the wagons carrying away chunks of fudge. The wagons take them directly to The Pounding And Cutting Room, where the fudge is reformed and sliced into small squares for retail sale. Wonka states the machine is equipped with "a large wire strainer ... which is used specially for catching children before they fall into the machine" adding that "It always catches them. At least it always has up to now."
The chapter dates back to an early draft with ten golden tickets, including two for Miranda Grope and Augustus Pottle, who fell into the chocolate river prior to the events of "Fudge Mountain". Augustus Pottle was routed to the Chocolate Fudge Room, not the Vanilla Fudge Room explored in this chapter, and Miranda Grope ended up in the Peanut Brittle Room.
"The Warming Candy Room"
The Warming Candy Room is dominated by a boiler, which heats a scarlet liquid. The liquid is dispensed one drop at a time, where it cools and forms a hard shell, storing the heat and "by a magic process ... the hot heat changes into an amazing thing called 'cold heat.'" After eating a single warming candy, one could stand naked in the snow comfortably. This is met with predictable disbelief from Clarence Crump, Bertie Upside, and Terence Roper, who proceed to eat at least one hundred warming candies each, resulting in profuse perspiration. The three boys and their families discontinue the tour after they are taken to cool off "in the large refrigerator for a few hours."
"The Children's-Delight Room"
Roald Dahl originally planned for a child called Marvin Prune to be included in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Dahl submitted the excised chapter regarding Marvin Prune to The Horn Book Review in the early 1970s. Rather than publish the chapter, Horn Book responded with a critical essay by novelist Eleanor Cameron, who criticised Dahl's worth as a human being.
Although it was believed that Horn Book never returned the chapter, Marvin Prune's chapter is actually available, but it has not yet been published. "The Children's-Delight Room" was reworked into "Spotty Powder". It is present in two versions. One features the workers from "The Vanilla Fudge Room" but also include "tiny whispery voices" who sing the songs after each child's exit, and Charlie with his mother and father. The second version features Grandpa Joe, Charlie's grandfather, who is present in the final book, and the Oompa-Loompas. In the version with the voices, the voices actually sing two songs, a two verse type one found in "The Vanilla Fudge Room", plus a longer one like the type that is found in the final book. Like Miranda, Marvin loves school and suffers the same fate as her—supposedly getting ground into powder.
A fan of the book since childhood, film director Tim Burton states, "I responded to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory because it respected the fact that children can be adults." In a 2006 list for the Royal Society of Literature, author J. K. Rowling (author of the Harry Potter books) named Charlie and the Chocolate Factory among her top ten books every child should read.
A 2004 study found that it was a common read-aloud book for fourth-graders in schools in San Diego County, California. A 2012 survey by the University of Worcester determined that it was one of the most common books that UK adults had read as children, after Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, and The Wind in The Willows.
Accolades for the book include
- New England Round Table of Children's Librarians Award (USA, 1972)
- Surrey School Award (UK, 1973)
- Read Aloud BILBY Award (Australia, 1992)
- Millennium Children's Book Award (UK, 2000)
- Blue Peter Book Award (UK, 2000)
- The Big Read, rank 35 in a survey of the British public by the BBC to identify the "Nation's Best-loved Novel" (UK, 2003)
- National Education Association, one of "Teachers' Top 100 Books for Children" based on a poll (USA, 2007)
- School Library Journal, rank 61 among all-time children's novels (USA, 2012)
In the 2012 survey published by SLJ, a monthly with primarily U.S. audience, Charlie was the second of four books by Dahl among the so-called Top 100 Chapter Books, one more than any other writer.
Unfavourable views and revisions
Although the book has always been popular and considered a children's classic by many literary critics, a number of prominent individuals have spoken critically of the novel over the years. Dominic Cheetham observes that numerous publishers turned down Dahl's book and even Knopf — the original, American publisher — agreed both that the book was in bad taste and books should not be aimed at both children and adults, as was Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Children's novelist and literary historian John Rowe Townsend has described the book as "fantasy of an almost literally nauseating kind" and accused it of "astonishing insensitivity" regarding the original portrayal of the Oompa-Loompas as black pygmies, although Dahl did revise this later. Cheetham notes that no outcry was raised about the anti-Indian sentiment shown in the "humorous, but belittling" naming of the Indian Prince Pondicherry and the portrayal of the "incredible stupidity in a stereotyped racial icon."
Another novelist, Eleanor Cameron, compared the book to the sweets that form its subject matter, commenting that it is "delectable and soothing while we are undergoing the brief sensory pleasure it affords but leaves us poorly nourished with our taste dulled for better fare." Ursula K. Le Guin voiced her support for this assessment in a letter to The Horn Book Review, noting that her own daughter would turn "quite nasty" upon finishing the book. Roald Dahl responded to Cameron's criticisms by noting the classics she had cited would not be well received by contemporary children.
Defenders of the book have pointed out it was unusual for its time in being quite dark for a children's book, with the "antagonists" not being adults or monsters (as is the case for most of Dahl's books) but the naughty children, who receive sadistic punishment in the end. However, despite such criticisms and complaints about the "high-handed way in which Mr Willy Wonka treats other people in the book," Mr. Wonka remains authoritarian, the supposedly tasteless features remain, the violence to the various children remains, and the supposedly dual nature of the intended readership also remains firmly unchanged."
Cheetham has catalogued additional criticisms about the book, including: "General Attitudes to Foreigners," citing the treatment of characters who may be perceived as American, in addition to the African and Indian characters noted above; "Employer-Employee Relations"; "Human Guinea Pigs"; "General Attitudes Towards Class"; "The Myth of Noble Poverty"; "Attitudes to Children"; "Attitudes to Parenthood"; and "Alcohol Abuse"
The cover art for Penguin UK's Modern Classics 50th Anniversary Edition of the book (publication date September 2014) has also received substantial criticism for his taste level and age-appropriateness. (See Editions.)
In addition to spawning several sequels, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory has frequently been adapted for other media, including games, radio, the screen, and stage, most often as plays or musicals for children — often titled Willy Wonka or Willy Wonka, Jr. and almost always featuring musical numbers by all the main characters (Wonka, Charlie, Grandpa Joe, Violet, Veruca, etc.); many of the songs are revised versions from the 1971 film.
- The book was first made into a feature film as a musical, titled Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971), directed by Mel Stuart, produced by David L. Wolper, and starring Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka, character actor Jack Albertson as Grandpa Joe, and Peter Ostrum as Charlie Bucket. The film had an estimated budget of $2.9 million but grossed only $4 million and was considered a box-office disappointment. Exponential home video and DVD sales, as well as repeated television airings, resulted in the film's subsequently becoming a cult classic. Concurrently with the 1971 film, the Quaker Oats Company introduced a line of candies whose marketing uses the book's characters and imagery.
- The BBC produced an adaptation for Radio 4 in the early 1980s.
- In 1985, the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory video game was released for the ZX Spectrum by developers Soft Options Ltd and publisher Hill MacGibbon.
- Another film version, titled Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005), directed by Tim Burton and starring Johnny Depp as Willy Wonka, Freddie Highmore as Charlie Bucket, Deep Roy as the Oompa-Loompas, Philip Wiegratz as Augustus Gloop, and Geoffrey Holder as the Narrator, was a hit, grossing about $470 million worldwide with an estimated budget of $150 million. The 1971 and 2005 films are consistent with the written work to varying degrees. The Burton film greatly expanded Willy Wonka's personal back-story borrowing many themes and elements from the book's sequel. Both films heavily expanded the personalities of the four bad children and their parents from the limited descriptions in the book.
- A video game, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory based on Burton's adaptation, was released on 11 July 2005.
- On 1 April 2006, the British theme park, Alton Towers, opened a family attraction themed around the story. The ride features a boat section, where guests travel around the chocolate factory in bright pink boats on a chocolate river. In the final stage of the ride, guests enter one of two glass elevators, where they join Willy Wonka as they travel around the factory, eventually shooting up and out through the glass roof.
- The Estate of Roald Dahl sanctioned an operatic adaptation called The Golden Ticket. It was written by American composer Peter Ash and British librettist Donald Sturrock. The Golden Ticket has completely original music and was commissioned by American Lyric Theater, Lawrence Edelson (producing artistic director), and Felicity Dahl. The opera received its world premiere at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis on 13 June 2010, in a co-production with American Lyric Theater and Wexford Festival Opera.
- A musical based on the novel, titled Charlie and the Chocolate Factory premiered at the West End's Theatre Royal, Drury Lane in May 2013 and officially opened on 25 June. The show is directed by Sam Mendes, with new songs by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman, and stars Douglas Hodge as Willy Wonka. The production broke records for weekly ticket sales. Coincidentally, Hodge was also the voice of a Charlie and the Chocolate Factory audiobook, as part of a package of Roald Dahl CDs read by celebrities.
- An episode of Dexter's Laboratory has Dee Dee win a Golden Diskette to win a trip to tour Professor Hawk's factory, similar to what happens in the book.
- Futurama spoofed Wonka's factory in "Fry and the Slurm Factory," in which it is the factory for a beverage named Slurm instead of chocolate and is run by creatures known as the Grunka-Lunkas.
- The 1971 film was spoofed in the Family Guy episode "Wasted Talent," which features Peter getting a trip to Pawtucket Pat's brewery for finding a silver scroll in his beer. The Pawtucket Patriot brewery also has Chumbawumbas similar to the Oompa-Loompas that sing their song when one of the winners, Joe, isn't allowed in the factory due to his disability. Pat sings a song named "Pure Inebriation" and the inside of his factory is very similar to Wonka's. Peter and Brian are kicked out when they use the Perma-Suds similar to Charlie and Grandpa Joe in the film. Two of the winners also bear a striking resemblance to Charlie and Grandpa Joe.
- The 1971 film has been spoofed multiple times in Robot Chicken. One of the skits shows a different backstory of Wonka kidnapping and torturing the Ooompa-Loompas to do his bidding. Another skit shows the Oompa-Loompas planning out the songs for the kids in a board room. A brief segment shows an Oompa-Loompa putting his penis through a hole in the edible wallpaper room and Grandpa Joe mistakes it for a carrot. One clip shows Wonka selling an Oompa-Loompa to the Salts. One skit implies Wonka only gave Charlie the factory to take the blame for what happened to the other children and suffer the punishment given to him by the court.
- CollegeHumor had the five children from the 1971 film take a tour of the Apple Factory in "Charlie and the Apple Factory," which had Steve Jobs replacing Wonka and Bill Gates as Slugworth.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory has undergone numerous editions and been illustrated by numerous artists.
- 1964, OCLC 9318922 (hardcover, Alfred A. Knopf, Inc., original, first US edition, illustrated by Joseph Schindelman)
- 1967, ISBN 9783125737600 (hardcover, George Allen & Unwin, original, first UK edition, illustrated by Faith Jaques)
- 1973, ISBN 0-394-81011-2 (hardcover, revised Oompa Loompa edition)
- 1976, ISBN 0-87129-220-3 (paperback)
- 1980, ISBN 0-553-15097-9 (paperback, illustrated by Joseph Schindelman)
- 1985, ISBN 0-14-031824-0 (paperback, illustrated by Michael Foreman)
- 1987, ISBN 1-85089-902-9 (hardcover)
- 1988, ISBN 0-606-04032-3 (prebound)
- 1992, ISBN 0-89966-904-2 (library binding, reprint)
- 1995 (illustrated by Quentin Blake)
- 1998, ISBN 0-14-130115-5 (paperback)
- 2001, ISBN 0-375-81526-0 (hardcover)
- 2001, ISBN 0-14-131130-4 (illustrated by Quentin Blake)
- 2002, ISBN 0-060-51065-X (audio CD read by Eric Idle)
- 2003, ISBN 0-375-91526-5 (library binding)
- 2004, ISBN 0-14-240108-0 (paperback)
- ISBN 0-8488-2241-2 (hardcover)
- 2011, ISBN 978-0-14-310633-3 (paperback), Penguin Classics Deluxe Edition, cover by Ivan Brunetti
- 2014, (hardcover, Penguin UK/Modern Classics, 50th anniversary edition)
- 2014, (hardcover, Penguin UK/Puffin celebratory golden edition, illustrated by Sir Quentin Blake)
- 2014, (double-cover paperback)
50th anniversary cover controversy
The cover photo of the 50th anniversary edition, published by Penguin Modern Classics for sale in the UK, and aimed at the adult market, has received widespread commentary. Some "absolutely love" the "beautiful" photo of a heavily-made up young girl seated on her mother's knee and wearing a doll-like expression, taken by the photographers Sofia Sanchez and Mauro Mongiello as part of a photo shoot for a 2008 fashion article in a French magazine, for a fashion article titled "Mommie Dearest." But many are critical, even "outraged." In addition to noting that "the image seemingly has little to do with the beloved children’s classic", reviewers and commenters in social media (such as posters on the publisher's Facebook page) have said the art evokes Lolita, Valley of the Dolls, and JonBenet Ramsey; looks like a scene from Toddlers & Tiaras; and is "misleading," "creepy," "sexualized," "grotesque," "misjudged on every level," "distasteful and disrespectful to a gifted author and his work," "pretentious," "trashy", "outright inappropriate," "terrifying," "really obnoxious," and "weird & kind of paedophilic."
The publisher explained its objective in a blog post accompanying the announcement about the jacket art: "This new image . . . looks at the children at the center of the story, and highlights the way Roald Dahl’s writing manages to embrace both the light and the dark aspects of life." Additionally, Penguin Press's Helen Conford told the Bookseller: "We wanted something that spoke about the other qualities in the book," Penguin Press's Helen Conford told the Bookseller. "It's a children's story that also steps outside children's and people aren't used to seeing Dahl in that way." She continued: "[There is] a lot of ill feeling about it, I think because it's such a treasured book and a book which isn't really a 'crossover book'" As she acknowledged: "People want it to remain as a children's book."
The New Yorker describes what it calls this "strangely but tellingly misbegotten" cover design thusly:"The image is a photograph, taken from a French fashion shoot, of a glassy-eyed, heavily made-up little girl. Behind her sits, a mother figure, stiff and coiffed, casting an ominous shadow. The girl, with her long, perfectly waved platinum-blond hair and her pink feather boa, looks like a pretty and inert doll—" The article continues: "And if the Stepford daughter on the cover is meant to remind us of Veruca Salt or Violet Beauregarde, she doesn’t: those badly behaved squirts are bubbling over with rude life." Moreover, writes Talbot, "The Modern Classics cover has not a whiff of this validation of childish imagination; instead, it seems to imply a deviant adult audience."
Candy by the The Willy Wonka Candy Company
- Martin Chilton (18 November 2010) The 25 best children's books The Daily Telegraph
- "Repton School 'helped inspire Dahl' to write Charlie". BBC. 12 November 2015.
- Bathroom Readers' Institute. "You're My Inspiration." Uncle John's Fast-Acting Long-Lasting Bathroom Reader. Ashland: Bathroom Reader's Press, 2005. 13.
- Kennedy, Maev (29 August 2014). "Lost chapter of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory published". The Guardian. Retrieved 12 August 2016.
- Jones, Miracle (2 February 2009). "'Spotty Powder,' the Lost Chapter from Roald Dahl's 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory' (blog)". The Fiction Circus. Retrieved 12 August 2016.
- Dahl, Roald; Blake, Quentin (ill.) (2010). The Missing Golden Ticket and Other Splendiferous Secrets. New York, New York: Puffin Books. ISBN 978-0-14-241742-3. Retrieved 12 August 2016. (published in England as Spotty Powder and other Splendiferous Secrets, ISBN 978-0-14-133040-2)
- Mangan, Lucy (30 August 2014). "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory at 50". The Guardian. Retrieved 12 August 2016.
- "The Warming Candy Room". Roald Dahl Archive. 2016. Retrieved 12 August 2016.
- Mangan, Lucy (13 September 2014). "Top 10 characters that didn't make Roald Dahl's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory". The Guardian. Retrieved 12 August 2016.
- "Miranda Mary Piker". Roald Dahl Archive. 2016. Retrieved 12 August 2016.
- "The Vanilla Fudge Room". Roald Dahl Archive. 2016. Retrieved 12 August 2016.
- Dahl, Roald (1973). "Spotty Powder". Puffin Post. 7 (1): 8–10.
- "The secret ordeal of Miranda Piker". The Times. 23 July 2005. Retrieved 12 August 2016. (subscription required)
- Lynch, PJ (28 April 2010). "Miranda Mary Piker (blog)". P J Lynch: Drawing, Painting and Illustration. Retrieved 12 August 2016.
- "Willy Wonka chapter missing 50 years reveals grisly end: Greedy boys disappear in fudge-cutting room". Daily Mail.
- Dahl, Roald (August 30, 2014). "A previously unpublished chapter of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory ("The Vanilla Fudge Room" is from an early draft of Roald Dahl's most famous novel. With new illustrations by Quentin Blake)". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 30 August 2014.
- Calamur, Krishnadev (September 1, 2014). "For Anniversary, A New Chapter Of 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory'". NPR. Retrieved 12 August 2016.
- Christensen, Lauren (11 September 2014). "How the Lost Chapter of Charlie and the Chocolate Factor Was Discovered". Vanity Fair. Retrieved 12 August 2016.
- Sturrock, Donald (2010). Storyteller: The Authorized Biography of Roald Dahl. New York, New York: Simon & Schuster. pp. 495–499. ISBN 978-1-4165-5082-2. Retrieved 15 August 2016.
- Cameron, Eleanor (October 1972). "McLuhan, Youth, and Literature: Part I". The Horn Book Magazine. Archived from the original on 15 October 2007. Retrieved 27 September 2008.
And this leads me once more to Eudora Welty before I go on to a certain children’s book I have in mind, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (Knopf). [...] I was compelled to go back once again to her fine little monograph Place in Fiction. In this small book Miss Welty sets forth her belief not only in the power of place in any created work but in the ways in which place exerts control over character portrayal, of how exceedingly important is explicitness of detail and a steady lucidity and uncompromise of purpose. She speaks further of how place has deeply to do with three kinds of goodness in fiction: the goodness and validity of the raw material, the goodness of the writing, and the goodness of the writer himself, his worth as a human being. And this worth is always mercilessly revealed in his writing, because there we discover his roots or lack of them, the place where he stands, his point of view or lack of it.
[...]Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (together with Charlotte’s Web [Harper]) is probably the book most read aloud by those teachers who have no idea, apparently, what other books they might read to the children. Charlie, again along with Charlotte’s Web, is always at the top of the best sellers among children’s books, put there by fond aunts and grandmothers and parents buying it as the perfect gift, knowing no better. And I do think this a most curious coupling: on the one hand, one of the most tasteless books ever written for children; and on the other, one of the best. We are reminded of Ford Madox Ford’s observation that only two classes of books are universal in their appeal: the very best and the very worst.
[...] [Charlie] is like candy (the chief excitement and lure of Charlie) in that it is delectable and soothing while we are undergoing the brief sensory pleasure it affords but leaves us poorly nourished with our taste dulled for better fare. I think it will be admitted of the average TV show that goes on from week to week that there is no time, either from the point of view of production or the time allowed for showing, to work deeply at meaning or characterization. All interest depends upon the constant, unremitting excitement of the turns of plot. And if character or likelihood of action — that is, inevitability — must be wrenched to fit the necessities of plot, there is no time to be concerned about this either by the director or by the audience. Nor will the tuned-in, turned-on, keyed-up television watcher give the superficial quality of the show so much as a second thought. He has been temporarily amused; what is there to complain about? And like all those nursing at the electronic bosom in McLuhan’s global village (as he likes to call it), so everybody in Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory is enclosed in its intoxicating confines forever: all the workers, including the little Oompa-Loompas brought over from Africa and, by the end of the book, Charlie and his entire family.
- Paul A. Woods (2007) Tim Burton: A Child's Garden of Nightmares p.177. Plexus, 2007
- Tim Burton, Mark Salisbury, Johnny Depp "Burton on Burton". p.223. Macmillan, 2006
- Charlotte Higgins. "From Beatrix Potter to Ulysses ... what the top writers say every child should read". the Guardian. Retrieved 16 September 2014.
- Fisher, Douglas et al. (2004). "Interactive Read-Alouds: Is There a Common Set of Implementation Practices?" (PDF). The Reading Teacher. 58 (1): 8–17. doi:10.1598/rt.58.1.1. Retrieved 19 August 2012.
- "Top ten books parents think children should read". The Telegraph. 19 August 2012. Retrieved 19 August 2012.
- Caviness, Tod. "Reading by Nine features Roald Dahl book". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved 17 January 2016.
- "Previous Winners of the BILBY Awards: 1990 – 96" (PDF). www.cbcaqld.org. The Children's Book Council of Australia Queensland Branch. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
- "BBC - The Big Read". Retrieved 16 September 2014.
- National Education Association (2007). "Teachers' Top 100 Books for Children". Retrieved 19 August 2012.
- Bird, Elizabeth (7 July 2012). "Top 100 Chapter Book Poll Results". A Fuse #8 Production. Blog. School Library Journal (blog.schoollibraryjournal.com). Retrieved 19 August 2012.
- Cheetham, Dominic (2006). "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory; Versions and Changes". 英文学と英語学 [English Literature and Language]. Tokyo: 上智大学英文学科 [Sophia University, Department of English]. 43: 77–96.
- Townsend, John Rowe (1974). Written for Children: an outline of English-language children's literature. Harmondsworth: Kestrel Books. p. 255. ISBN 0722654669. Retrieved 15 August 2016.
- Cheetham (2006), p. 8
- Le Guin, Ursula K. (April 1973). "Letters to the Editor (on McLuhan, Youth, and Literature: Part I)". The Horn Book Magazine. Archived from the original on 11 October 2007. Retrieved 27 September 2008.
Eleanor Cameron’s remarks on Charlie and the Chocolate Factory in the Horn Book may draw some fire upon her; it’s always perilous to do anything to a bestseller but adulate it. My response to her October article is one of relief and hearty thanks. It is good to have an accurate diagnosis of one’s vague feelings of unease, and to find that somebody else — especially a gentle and perceptive critic — has been feeling a bit queasy too.
That Mr. Dahl’s books have a very powerful effect on children is evident. Kids between 8 and 11 seem to be truly fascinated by them; one of mine used to finish Charlie and then start it right over from the beginning (she was subject to these fits for about two months at age 11). She was like one possessed while reading it, and for a while after reading she was, for a usually amiable child, quite nasty. Apparently the books, with their wish-fulfillment, their slam-bang action, and their ethical crassness, provide a genuine escape experience, a tiny psychological fugue, very like that provided by comic books.
- Dahl, Roald (February 1973). ""Charlie and the Chocolate Factory": A Reply". The Horn Book Magazine. Archived from the original on 15 October 2007. Retrieved 15 August 2016.
I would dearly like to see Mrs. Cameron trying to read Little Women, or Robinson Crusoe for that matter, to a class of today’s children. The lady is completely out of touch with reality. She would be howled out of the classroom. She also says, “I should like to travel up and down the country going to elementary schools and saying to all the teachers: Find out about the good children’s books.” I myself would like very much to hear what the teachers’ replies would be if the patronizing, all-knowing Mrs. Cameron ever tried to do this.
- Cheetham (2006), p. 3
- Cheetham (2006), p. 7
- Cheetham (2006), p. 10
- Cheetham (2006), pp. 10–11
- Cheetham (2006), p. 11
- Cheetham (2006), pp. 11–12
- Cheetham (2006), p. 12
- Cheetham (2006), pp. 12–13
- Cheetham (2006), p. 13
- Symon, Evan V. (January 14, 2013). "10 Deleted Chapters that Transformed Famous Books". listverse.com.
- Kara K. Keeling; Scott T. Pollard (15 December 2008). Critical Approaches to Food in Children's Literature. Taylor & Francis. pp. 221–. ISBN 978-0-203-88891-9. Retrieved 28 July 2013.
- "Willy Wonka company information". Careers In Food. Retrieved 28 December 2010.
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- "West End Winners". theatrebookings.com. Retrieved 2 July 2015.
- Galindo, Brian (March 8, 2013). "The Evolution Of "Charlie And The Chocolate Factory" Book Covers". BuzzFeed.
- "Publisher defends 'creepy' Roald Dahl book cover". BBC News. 8 August 2014.
- Talbot, Margaret (August 29, 2014). "Cultural Comment: Meant For Kids". The New Yorker.
- Kaplan, Sarah (August 15, 2014). "What divisive 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory' cover says about books and readers". Washington Post.
- Kim, Eun Kyung (August 7, 2014). "Creepy New Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Book Cover Confuses Readers". Today.
- Kaplan, Sarah (August 15, 2014). "What divisive Charlie and the Chocolate Factory cover says about books and readers". Washington Post.
- Kim, Eun Kyung (August 7, 2014). "Creepy New Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Book Cover Confuses Readers". Today.
- "Anger over 'sexualised' cover for Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Mail Online". Mail Online. Retrieved 16 September 2014.
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- "Fudge Mountain": Dahl, Roald (August 30, 2014). "A previously unpublished chapter of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory ("The Vanilla Fudge Room" is from an early draft of Roald Dahl's most famous novel. With new illustrations by Quentin Blake)". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 30 August 2014.
- "Fudge Mountain": "The Vanilla Fudge Room". Roald Dahl Archive. 2016. Retrieved 12 August 2016.
- "Spotty Powder": Jones, Miracle (2 February 2009). "'Spotty Powder,' the Lost Chapter from Roald Dahl's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (blog)". The Fiction Circus. Retrieved 12 August 2016.
- "The Warming Candy Room": "The Warming Candy Room". Roald Dahl Archive. 2016. Retrieved 12 August 2016.