Alice in wonderland paper

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Alice in wonderland paper

  1. 1. Brittany Martinez Neuman-lee Communications 11-B 12/19/08 Martinez 1 The controversy of Alice in Wonderland Alice in Wonderland, often rings a bell for most, if not all people. The book and movie has struck the minds of many people with both fascination and criticism. The creation of Lewis Carroll; “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” and Disney’s recreation; “Alice in Wonderland” are both popular and well known throughout the United States. Alice in wonderland is one of the biggest movies in the Disney collection, everyone has heard of it. All people want to know the “who, what, where, when, why” of the story. Also the things in the book and movie that people criticized. Last but not least, the differences from the movie and book and why it’s a children’s story. Alice in wonderland was created by Lewis Carroll, he was born 27 January 1832, he had a career in education, but it was troubled by a bad stammer. In spite of his stammer, he spoke easily with children, he was shy and he even hid his hands continually within a pair of gray-and-black gloves. He wrote humorous verse, such as “The Hunting of the Snark” he was ambitious and anxious to make his mark on the world as a writer or an artist. "I do not think I have yet written anything worthy of real publication but I do not despair of doing so some day", he wrote in July 1855. During his life he experienced Migraines, Several people have suggested the odd experiences Alice undergoes in the stories may have been inspired by migraine-like symptoms. He also experienced micropsia and macropsia, it is a brain condition affecting the way objects
  2. 2. Martinez 2 are perceived by the mind. For example, an afflicted person may look at a larger object, like a basketball, and perceive it as if it were the size of a mouse. This is Lewis Carroll, but why did he make Alice in Wonderland? Lewis Carroll was very close with the Liddell family, one day Carroll started to tell a long story to Alice Liddell, who was the daughter of Henry George Liddell, the head of his Oxford College. The Alice's Adventures in Wonderland was born from these tales. Having told the story and been begged by Alice Liddell to write it down, Carroll eventually presented her with a handwritten, illustrated manuscript entitled “Alice's Adventures Under Ground” in November 1864. After Lewis died his diaries were found, some pages were missing from the diaries. A popular explanation for one particular missing page (27 June 1863) is that it might have been torn out to conceal the belief that Carroll had proposed marriage on that day to the 11-year old Alice Liddell. However, there has never been any evidence to suggest this was so, (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lewis_Carroll#Alice) So, what is Alice in Wonderland? Alice in wonderland is a story of a girl named Alice who falls down a rabbit-hole into a fantasy world populated by peculiar creatures she finds herself getting bigger and smaller with the help of mushrooms and drinks. While she is in this fantasy world she runs into some odd creatures such as the Caterpillar; the Cheshire Cat, the Mad Hatter, the Queen of Hearts, the White Rabbit and, a whole lot more. Who exactly are these characters and what are their roles?
  3. 3. Martinez 3 Lets start off with the Caterpillar, in the story the Caterpillar is sitting on a mushroom while smoking a hookah. He corrects Alice's recitation of a poem; he does help her by advising her to eat from the mushroom if she wants to change her size. In the end, he crawls away. So what is the role he portrays? Many people see it different ways, some see it as The Caterpillar actually teaches Alice how to cope with the difficulties in Wonderland. He teaches her how to change size by eating the mushroom and to adapt to her environment when needed. There are also the people who see the caterpillar smoking his hookah, and his advice to Alice to eat from a mushroom as a form a drug use. He is they main reasons why many people think that the story of Alice in Wonderland contains hidden meanings to drug use, so which is the truth? If Lewis Carroll were actually on drugs, the book would be a bunch of rambling nonsense, so I believe the Caterpillars role was to help Alice. Next we take a look at the infamous Cheshire Cat, Alice meets it when she leaves the Duchess house, and finds it in a tree. It constantly grins and can disappear and reappear whenever it likes. Sometimes it disappears and leaves its grin behind. The Cheshire Cat is the only character in Wonderland who actually listens to Alice. With his remarks, he teaches Alice the ‘rules’ of Wonderland. He teaches her how things work down there. The role of the Cheshire Cat isn’t exactly clear, there are a lot of things that could have been Carroll’s inspiration. The one that seems most logical with his background would be, 'Alice Window' in Christ Church, Oxford, you can see 3 grinning animals at the top of the Liddell's family arms. The next character is The Mad Hatter; the Mad Hatter is one of the members of the Mad Tea Party. Later he also appears as a witness during the trial. He occasionally is very rude and
  4. 4. Martinez 4 provokes Alice during the tea party. When he is called upon by the Queen, he is very nervous and frightened. The phrase 'mad as a hatter' was common in Carroll's time. In fact most hatters (person who makes hats) actually did go mad, because the mercury they used sometimes gave them mercury poisoning. Carroll may have asked to draw the Mad Hatter to resemble Theophilus Carter, a furniture dealer near Oxford. Carter was known in the area as the Mad Hatter, partly because he always wore a top hat and because of his eccentric ideas. one of the biggest things people criticize about the mad hatter is the label on his top hat 'ten and six' but it’s a price tag and it means 10 shillings and 6 pennies. The next and probably most vicious character is the Queen of Hearts; The Queen of Hearts is violent, authoritative and dominant. She likes to play croquet with live flamingoes and hedgehogs as mallets and balls! she constantly orders the beheading of people when something isn't to her liking. She also has her own ideas about how trials should be conducted, and is feared by all other Wonderland creatures because of her lack of patience and her infamous line "Off with his head!" Lewis Carroll said "I pictured to myself the Queen of Hearts as a sort of embodiment of ungovernable passion – a blind and aimless Fury." Last but not least is the White Rabbit; White Rabbit is the first Wonderland character Alice meets. She follows him when he hurries into his hole and enters Wonderland. He is late for his job with the Duchess. While walking through Wonderland, Alice comes to his house where the White Rabbit, mistakes her for his housemaid Mary Ann, and orders her to get his gloves and a fan. She grows and gets stuck in his house and her orders her out. In the end Alice discovers that the White Rabbit is a herald in the Queen of Heart's court. Dean Liddell, Alice's father, might
  5. 5. Martinez 5 have been an inspiration for the White Rabbit. The Dean was always running late as well; there was no west entrance to the Chrisht Church Cathedral and the Dean would normally have to walk through the south door. Therefore he was known for being late for services. These are the facts of the characters, but what do people think about them, what do people think about the whole story in general? A survey of 7 people with the following questions 1. What do you think about Alice in Wonderland, the story in general? 2. How do you feel about the Caterpillar? 3. How do you feel about the Cheshire Cat? 4. How do you feel about the Mad Hatter? 5. How do you feel about the Queen of Hearts? 6. How do you feel about the White Rabbit? 6 out of the 7 people felt that the story is confusing and weird, 1 of the 7 felt it was a good story until he found out “a guy on shrooms wrote it” The Caterpillar had a lot of different feedback, 2 of the 7 felt that the Caterpillar promotes drug use because of him smoking a hookah. Another 2 of the 7 felt that the Caterpillar was weird. 1 of the 7 thought he was cool because of his line “whoo are you?” and the last 2 of the 7 thought he was a “crack head” and a “pothead” Like the Caterpillar the Cheshire Cat had a lot of feedback as well, 4 of the 7 felt that the cat was weird. 1 of the 7 thought he was scary because he could disappear and was everywhere. 1 of the
  6. 6. Martinez 6 7 thought that he was weird but cool and wishes he could disappear like him. The last of the 7 thought that he was trippy because he could disappear. The Mad Hatter was not easily remembered by all the people but his feedback did too also range. 1 of the 7 though he was annoying because he was saying it was somebody’s birthday and it wasn’t anyone’s birthday. Another of the 7 thought he was mean and rude. 3 of the seven felt that he was crazy…hence the name “the MAD hatter” 1 of the 7 thought he was funny and spastic and him having a British accent made things a whole lot funnier. The last of the seven thought he was annoying as well. Unlike the others, the Queen of Hearts got no friendly feedback. 3 of the 7 thought she was evil. 1 of the 7 says that she reminds her of an evil stepmother and felt that she was yelling at her while she was watching the movie. Another of the 7 felt that she was controlling and powerful but used her power for bad. Another thought that she was too bossy. And he last… well lets just say she didn’t have kind words to say about her. The White Rabbit seems to only be known for Alice following him into Wonderland, 1 of the 7 felt that he was a symbol for Alice to follow into Wonderland. Another found him to be her favorite because it all started because of him. Another says that he reminds him of a grandpa. 2 of the 7 didn’t really have anything to say about him. Another thought that he would be a good companion for Alice. And the last felt that…”he was in a hurry”
  7. 7. Martinez 7 The answers as you can see for the questions range. Many of the people who were surveyed didn’t really even remember the story and hadn’t seen it since they were little kids. But still they can remember so much of it, its shocking to see how big of a movie Alice in wonderland really was.
  8. 8. MLA Citations "The Caterpillar." Lennys Alice in Wondderland Site. <http://www.alice-in- wonderland.net/school/caterpillar.html>. "The Cheshire Cat." Lennys Alice in Wondderland Site. <http://www.alice-in- wonderland.net/school/cheshire-cat.html>. "The Mad Hatter." Lennys Alice in Wondderland Site. <http://www.alice-in- wonderland.net/school/mad-hatter.html>. "The Queen of Hearts." Lennys Alice in Wondderland Site. <http://www.alice-in- wonderland.net/school/queen-of-hearts.html>. "The White Rabbit." Lennys Alice in Wondderland Site. <http://www.alice-in- wonderland.net/school/white-rabbit.html>. "Lewis Carroll." <http://www.kirjasto.sci.fi/lcarroll.htm>. "Lewis Carroll and Alice in Wonderland." Wikipedia. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/lewis_carroll#alice)>.

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