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Alice in Wonderland Discussion


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As I am currently reading Subahibi, it is only natural to bring up a discussion about Alice in Wonderland, and its influence in literature. 

 

The first question is "why"? What exactly is it about this story filled with ridiculousness on the verge on nonsense that causes it to continue to captivate people to do this day? Is it just one of those things that unless you reference you don't get to be part of the "cool writers club"? 

 

I honestly don't remember that much of what happened in the story at this point since I read it a long long time ago, but I'd like to hear thoughts on it if anyone holds any. 

 

Some stuff that have references to Alice in Wonderland:

 

Subahibi (obviously)

Mahoyo (Alice Kuonji. She also brings forth the Snark from "Hunting of the Snark" by the same author) 

Rance series (The goddess Alice looks similar to artistic depictions of Alice, and has the same childlike innocence) 

 

 

 

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he first question is "why"? What exactly is it about this story filled with ridiculousness on the verge on nonsense that causes it to continue to captivate people to do this day?

 

it talks about you, the person. the story questions your existence and insanity. its hard to understand but basically thats it, here some examples:

 

http://www.theguardian.com/books/2015/mar/20/alice-in-wonderland-what-does-it-all-mean

 

p.s happy 150 anniversary of Alice in Wonderland

 

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it talks about you, the person. the story questions your existence and insanity. its hard to understand but basically thats it,

I think that if it was hard to understand that aspect of AiW, then it wouldn't nearly be as popular. Sure it's definitely a factor, and it's a massive hit among philosophers, but I think we also need to look at what's interesting about it on the surface value.

AiW's concept is simple. A girl going into an unknown world is captivating, yet simple. But what would make that memorable is the world itself, and AiW's world is absolutely insane. There is no logic, and this extends to everything. They're all mad there. This makes it unpredictable, so it's simply fun to read. When I write stories, I enjoy referencing things I like. A little nudge here and there is pretty fun. I wouldn't be surprised if other authors enjoy it as well, and given AiW's appeal it's not that surprising either. I referenced it myself.

 

On the philosophical level, it's also very intriguing given that each situation could symbolize something, and the whole of it is another beast entirely, with -like firecat posted- multiple interpretations.

 

Well, that's simply why I like Wonderland, so that may not be entirely accurate.

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I think the key is "on the verge of nonsense".  If it were utter nonsense, it wouldn't be nearly as good.  (If you just wanted utter nonsense, you could just go and read the entire Three Word Story thread :))

 

http://nargaque.com/2010/04/07/quotations-from-alice-in-wonderland/

 

In addition to the book, I have the classic cartoon movie, adventure game and video game...  I don't know quite why I'm mentioning that, but anyway...  If I were to count references I've seen to Alice in Wonderland, even just limited to Japanese anime, manga, and games, there'd still be hundreds.

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Same reason as Cardcaptor Sakura, everyone's a lolicon and they love the main girl

 

The reason I think AiW made such a big impact was because it was the first example of something like a Disney movie. It was something ostensibly aimed at children, simple and easy to enjoy with a lot of nonsense and mockery of things kids would find stupid about their daily lives (lessons, manners, respecting adults etc) but with absolute tons of hidden meanings and symbolism and satire put into it. Everyone who reads it can see it from a different angle. Kids get the silly nonsense adventure, math nerds can bask in Carroll's impressive mathematical knowledge that seeps into the story, historians can laugh at all the super un-subtle mockery Carroll was making of parts of the English government and academia.

 

So just like Walt Disney wowed the world by making animated features that every single member of the family (except the super jaded ones) could enjoy, Lewis Carroll did the same, only when he did it it was a very new and original thing to make something so universally entertaining and smart.

 

Too bad his other big novel duo, Sylvie and Bruno/Sylvie and Bruno Concluded, never got the same attention as Alice. To be fair, Sylvie and Bruno is nowhere near as good or universally enjoyable as Alice, but it definitely has a huge amount of charm. I heartily recommend it for anyone who loves Alice and wants more good Carroll stuff.

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What I find the most interesting is that AIW has tackled so many different genres with the story. From horror to comedy, it has seen the characters being thrown across every spectrum of entertainment. The Mad Hatter and Cheshire Cat are 2 of the most popular characters, and their personalities (along with all of the other characters) are great tools for expanding the universe in fan made stories. The fantasy element allows writers and artists to create anything they please with no rules at all.

 

It's just a universal story that took the world by storm, for the same reason Lovecraft is such a huge influence as well for horror and the unknown. In fact, if I could pick out my top three writers in the world, they would be F. Scott Fitzgerald, Carol, and Lovecraft. Fantastic storytellers.

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