Illustration from Through the Looking Glass by John Tenniel

There is so much to say about Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, and most of it has already been said in much smarter people than me. But I’ve committed myself to writing critically about everything I read from now on, so suffer these few thoughts on a very tired subject.

Dodgson (Carroll was a penname) wrote Alice in Wonderland for a real girl named Alice Liddell, who was the daughter of a colleague at Oxford. So all the while he was writing this story for her, he was aware of the fact that she would soon grow up, and her personality would change. Dodgson adored children, perhaps even idealized them, and both Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass are permeated with a sense of the inevitable loss of Alice’s childhood.

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