Philosophy – a subject that had driven people insane for as long as humans know their history. All the time people try to find a meaning, and later controvert it. For example, critics view a novel by Lewis Carroll Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, as a quest for maturity story, Carroll’s view on Victorian Society and even existential meaning on life. All of those interpretations come from philosophical “drive” of the critics. The truth is that anyone can point a finger at the book and come up with their own “deep” meaning of the story, but if one looks at facts, well known, and obvious things – it is clear that the story is simply a children tale intended for entertainment and nothing more.
Of course there is no sure way to prove that Carroll did not intend any deeper meaning into the story, after all, he was a mathematician and a man of great knowledge of children (19th Century Literature Criticism 105), but lets take a look at the most obvious fact – the time, place and audience of the original story of Alice in Wonderland. Here are the words of Lewis Carroll as he recalls that day: Full many a year has slipped away, since that “golden afternoon” that gave thee birth, but I can call it up almost as clearly as if it were yesterday – the cloudless blue above, the watery mirror below, the boat drifting idly on its way, the tinkle of the drops that fell from the oars, as they waved so sleepily to and fro, and (the one bright gleam of life in all the slumberous scene) the three eager faces, hungry for news of fairyland, and who would not he say ‘nay’ to: from whose lips ‘Tell us a story, please,’ had all the stern immutability of Fate!
The “three eager faces” Carro...
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Carroll, Lewis. Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland & Through The Looking-Glass Signet Classic New York, NY 1960.
Cohen, Morton. Lewis Carroll: A Biography Alfred A. Knopf New York, NY 1996.
England in Literature: MacBeth Edition: Teacher’s Supplement Chapter 8, “Alice in Wonderland” 144-146. Scott Foresman & Co. 1973.
Gattegno, Jean. Lewis Carroll: Fragments of a Looking-Glass “Alice” and “A Carroll Chronology” 4-27. Thomas Y. Crowell Co. 1973 New York, NY.
Hudson, Derek. Lewis Carroll “Alice” 124-149. Folcroft Library Editions 1976.
Kelly, Richard. Lewis Carroll “Alice” 78-97. U of Tenn. Twayne Publishers, G. K. Hall & Co. Boston, Mass 1977.
Nineteenth-Century Literature Criticism, Vol. 2 “Lewis Carroll (1832-1898)” 105-121.
Rackin, Donald. Alice’s Journey to the End of Night 132-143 MLA 1966.
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