06
Nov
09

Perplexing Correlations

I find the relationship between the outside world and Wonderland quite interesting.

My intrigue sprouted from a scene in chapter three, in which the mouse in chapter three plays a witty joke. Presently, the animals which have congregated on the bank are wet from swimming in Alice’s tears. That clever little mouse formulates a solution and dives into a very dull speech about William the Conqueror in an attempt to dry the people/animals around him (I know, it certainly had me chortling).

But, whilst chortling, I began to question how/why Carroll would have this mouse knowing the things of the outside world that he knows. Supposing that the information the mouse knows of the outside world is supplied by the White Rabbit’s trips in and out of Wonderland, there is a one way flow of information between the two worlds. He ventures outside, takes care of whatever business he desires to take care of, perhaps learns something from a German squirrel on holiday which is then carried back into Wonderland and shared with the other characters. This system (or flow, if you will) of education intrigues me. The real world plays teacher to Wonderworld via a speedy, curious rabbit.

Now that Alice has followed the flow down the rabbit hole, if she is to continue following the flow of knowledge, then she will share her insight with the characters she meets along her adventure. However, Alice thus far has played a student in the story more than she has played a teacher. I intend to find what this suggests may suggest. We cannot say that she has come to Wonderland to pursue wisdom or to cast her wisdom upon others, but she has simply plopped in by complete accident. We also cannot say that Alice will not learn nothing while venturing through Wonderland, so she must come out of Wonderland with knowledge.

Assuming that the White Rabbit is not sharing his knowledge of Wonderland with animals/humans of the real world then it is safe to say that Alice’s personal direction of education is unquestionably opposite of the Rabbit’s. And, if the Rabbit can teach the outside world’s information to the citizens of Wonderland, that must mean that Alice can apply her knowledge of Wonderland to the outside world.

Does this mean that this book is nothing but a book of lessons?


1 Response to “Perplexing Correlations”


  1. 1 Christian Long
    November 7, 2009 at 5:04 am

    Love your use of “chortling”! I do — as you already know — hope it shows up as a title of a future blog post, if, you know, you’re, you know, bored and can’t think of another.

    Cleverly posed:

    “We cannot say that she has come to Wonderland to pursue wisdom or to cast her wisdom upon others, but she has simply plopped in by complete accident. We also cannot say that Alice will not learn nothing while venturing through Wonderland, so she must come out of Wonderland with knowledge.”

    My suspicions are that you’d do quite well in a college-level philosophy course one day. You have a natural ability to play with rhetorical suppositions and counters. Nice work semantically.


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