Aspects of Alice by Robert Philips, Ed.

By Robert Philips, Ed.

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The essays by Donald Rackin and by Miss Bloomingdale seriously take up the cudgel of the jesting Dean. For all their ingenuity, none of these critics shall have claim to the final word on Alice. " Alice remains delightfully enigmatic to the end. If this anthology entertains as much as it informs, its inten­ tions will be fulfilled. Above all, the editor hopes the essays will send the reader back to the Carroll books with something like new wonder­ ment as well as new understanding. ROBERT PHILLIPS Diisseldorf-Benrath, Germany July 4, 1971 I Personal and Biographical Today's ��wonder-WorId" Needs ALICE by W.

His heroic virtue-that is to say, his superiority to adults-lies in his freedom from conventional ways of thinking and acting : all social habits, from manners to creeds, are regarded as false or hypocritical or both. All emperors are really naked. Alice, surely, must come to the average American as a shock. " When, puzzled by the novelty of Wonderland, she asks herself if she could have changed into some other child, she is quite certain what sort of child she does not want to be : "I'm sure I can't be Mabel, for I know all sorts of things, and she, oh, she knows such a very little .

When he told a story, it was always for a particular child. One of them, not Alice, records : One thing that made his stories particularly charming to a child was that he often took his cue from her remarks-a question would set him off on quite a new trail of ideas, so that one felt one had somehow helped to make the story, and it seemed a personal possession. Very few writers, I believe, however much they desire fame for their books, enjoy being a public figure who is recognized on the street by strangers, but Dodgson hated publicity more than most.

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