Like most kids, I had also read Alice in Wonderland when I was around eight or ten, I suppose. I had also seen the Disney movie, and had the video cassette at home. However, it was only during my school assembly a few years later when I actually realized what a wealth of information it was.
The Principal was giving us senior students some tips about choosing our stream. He started his speech by quoting the Chesire Cat, who said that it didn’t matter which way you went if you weren’t sure about where you wanted to go. The fact that he would reference a children’s book itself was surprising to me! Later, I re-read this classic a few times, and it always gives me something new every time. It was only natural that this would be my natural choice for starting the A to Z Challenge!
Alice in Wonderland is actually ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’ and is written by Charles Lutwidge Dodgson. The story originated on a boat ride Dodgson took with a little girl named Alice and her sisters. What started as the tale of a bored little girl looking for adventure has turned into one of the greatest literary classics of all time! While on the surface, the story seems extremely fantastical and nonsensical, a more intense look will reveal some wonderful life truths.
I feel that the characters in the book itself are good representations of people you see in life – The French Mouse is like many politicians today, giving useless speeches when others are suffering. The White Rabbit seems like any person rushing through the rat race of life and The Mad Hatter is like many people who don’t do much other than having tea and asking aimless questions all day! This fits in with one theory that Dodgson wrote the story as a satire on current society.
The events in the story are also thought provoking. It’s an important lesson in consequences – whatever Alice eats or drinks impacts her almost immediately! The Queen is a perfect example of a dictator who has no qualms about utilizing people – they are just nameless cards to her. She uses live animals for her amusement and has no sense of justice – sounds familiar?
Most importantly, Alice in Wonderland shows that it is possible to co-exist with people who look, think and speak differently from yourself. It shows that no matter how mad the world may seem, it is still possible to find those with good sense and valuable advice – you only need to listen!
Have you read Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland? What stood out to you in the story?