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Alice in Wonderland 6 March 2010

Posted by Ryszard Oślizło in Essays, Film.
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The TitleAlice in Wonderland poster
Alice in Wonderland is a novel written in 1865 by English author Lewis Carroll (his real name was Charles Lutwidge Dodgson). The original title of the book was Alice’s Adventures Underground, but it was later renamed to Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and finally shortened to the version of the title under which it is published today.

The story
The novel tells the story of seven-year-old Alice who falls asleep in a meadow and through a rabbit hole she enters a fantasy world. Walking around the Wonderland, she meets plenty of strange creatures, such as the White Rabbit, the Queen of Hearts or the Mad Hatter. She has lots of adventures and tries to reason in numerous discussions which clearly lack the logic of the waking world.

The influence
The storyline, the characters, the structure and the language of Alice in Wonderland influenced plenty of creative works by other authors, especially in the fantasy genre. Some terms used by Lewis Carroll in the book have entered the language and popular culture all over the world. Nowadays, everyone knows what kind of place “Wonderland” refers to and that going on an adventure into the unknown can be described as going “down the rabbit hole” – which is the Chapter 1 title of Alice in Wonderland. The most famous quote from the book seems to be the Queen of Hearts’ words “Off with her head!”

The sequel
In 1871 Lewis Carroll wrote Through the Looking Glass, the sequel to Alice in Wonderland, and it is even more often quoted than the first book. When Alice’s adventures were published, they were considered children’s literature, but as Virginia Woolf said, “the two Alices are not books for children; they are the only books in which we become children”.

The film
The story of Alice has been made into a film several times and the latest adaptation by Tim Burton has just been released (March 5, 2010). As the director says, the film is his own personal journey into the Wonderland so no matter if you have read the books or not, you may expect the unexpected (after all, Tim Burton’s Alice is…19 years old). Go down the rabbit hole and explore the 3D Wonderland hand in hand with Alice.


Your Turn!

Here you can read or download
Alice in Wonderland
Through the Looking Glass

Here you can read more
about Lewis Carroll

THINK ENGLISH recommends
Alice’s interactive adventures

Choose 2 or more characters that Alice meets in Wonderland and describe their looks, personality and/or actions:

  • The White Rabbit
  • The Caterpillar
  • The Duchess
  • The Cheshire Cat
  • The Mad Hatter
  • The March Hare
  • The Queen of Hearts
  • The Red Queen
  • The White Queen

Search the Internet and find some books, films, musicals, paintings, etc. influenced by the story of Alice in Wonderland. Post the titles as a comment and write which element of the story was used there.

Check which Wonderland character you are.
Do the quiz and paste the outcome (html code) as your comment!

Post your comment HERE

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