Alice in Wonderland

Trapped in Wonderland

Lewis Carroll's Adventures in Wonderland provides a physical removal from reality by creating a fantastical world and adventure in the mind of a young girl. In this separation, Carroll is able to bend the rules of the temporal world. Although this is self-evident in Alice's physical transfigurations, language and conventions provide additional means to test if a world can defy the rules which are didactically fed to children and become second nature to adults. Perhaps it might be an inescapable outcome given that Carroll has been educated in a world that operates within structured set of rules, but the "wonderful dream" seems to be peculiarly similar to the "dull reality" which Carroll attempts to escape (98). Fantasies seem to be forever bounded by what reality allows the mind to imagine.

The opening scene provides a possible metaphor for Carroll's artistic endeavor in the face of these constraints:

Alice opened the door and found that it led into a small passage, not much larger than a rat-hole: she knelt down and looked along the passage into the loveliest garden you ever saw. How she longed to get out of the dark hall, and wander about among those beds of bright flowers and those cool...

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