It is difficult to imagine a person in the world who has never heard about the famous story of Alice in the Wonderland. The address to this fascinating plot about a little girl who appears in miraculous surroundings seems to have its reflection both direct and indirect one in a variety of movies, cartoons, books, computer games, songs, toys, and so on (Bloom 1987). The question is what is the reason of such wide and plenary popularity? The reasons appear to be numerous: this novel by inimitable Lewis Carol can be acclaimed as a beautiful fairy-tale featuring the whole bunch of miraculous and magic things which are so loved by children along with rich historical, social and political overtones which are intriguing for the adult audience. Generally, the story about Alice in the Wonderland can be evaluated as a combination of a variety of the most successful story-telling style, intriguing plot which constantly shifts to the most unexpected developments and numerous addresses to serious topics such as the Victorian society with its numerous problems caused by the outdated ideas of conservatism, childhood with its problems and difficulties, and feminist ideas gaining their momentum during the days of Alice’ creation.
Speaking about the success of Lewis Carol’s ‘Alice in the Wonderland’, it seems that it is much stronger than the duration of time and ever changing ideas affecting people’s way of thinking, likes, dislikes, preferences, moods and determinations. The novel ‘Alice in the Wonderland’ by Lewis Carol can be acclaimed as one of the most incredible and amazing creations by this inimitable master of word, imagination and ideas (Richardson 1999). Alice’ story appears in the most unexpected contexts beginning from computer games, and ending with advertising clips and billboards; it can be also seen in a place where the audience got accustomed to see it’s the most diversified reflections from day to day, and from year to year – on the TV screen (Schwartz 2006). Here is one of numerous descriptions of the novel’s tremendous success:
At all events, the fantasy has now lasted 100 years. What is more surprising, it
has withstood the stringent test of translation into forty-seven languages (by the
reckoning of Dr. Warren Weaver, whose collection, ranging from Finnish to
Swahili and from Chinese to Esperanto versions, should harbor an independent
interest for cultural anthropologists) (Levin 2011, p. 597)
Such success is explained by numerous success factors. Namely, according to Levin (2011, p. 560), “excerpts have been quoted in, and out of, every conceivable they must touch off some of the deeper responses of human consciousness, in order to have penetrated so far beyond their immediate period and culture”. The author of the book is often praised for his unique talent; one of such commentaries is mentioned by Levin in his article dedicated to Alice in the Wonderland success: “Lewis Carroll’s [talent] has been defined by a French fantast, Andre Breton, as “the vital solution to a profound contradiction between the acceptance of faith and the exercise of reason” (2011, p.561). Thus, it is evident that one of Alice’ reasons of popularity is covered in the mind, heart and soul of her ingenious creator.
Further, Alice in the Wonderland can be evaluated as a piece of literature which is interesting and engaging for the very diversified public from the most immature ones to adults who lived long years and acquired the richest life experience which can be imagined (Satoshi 2008). This novel is full of a variety of miraculous events, unexpected developments, mystique occurrences along with meaningful dialogues, practical moral lessons to be learnt and deep political, psychological, social and even religious overtones which can be interesting for the audience with the most sophisticated tastes and preferences (Jackson 1988). Additionally, in this story the reader will be delighted to see the reflection of an idealized vision of childhood which is so appealing especially nowadays when our cruel reality is overflowed with stressful events and troublesome accidents
Next, this story is also a way to escape from reality to the world with a variety of the most unexpected personages, unreal conditions, magic opportunities and chances to sense something which will blow every person’s mind without a doubt. Whoever has not dreamed about such opportunities? People love miracles, magic, unusual occurrences and abnormal events. Everything listed above is a direct address to the world of ‘Alice in the Wonderland’ (Macpherson 2000, Reider 2005).
Concluding on the information related above, it should be stated that the novel ‘Alice in the Wonderland’ by Lewis Carol can be acclaimed as one of the most incredible and amazing creations by this inimitable master of word, imagination and ideas. ‘Alice in the Wonderland’ is a combination of the most winning plot, story-telling style, intriguing ideas and numerous addresses to serious topics such as the Victorian society with its numerous problems caused by the outdated ideas of conservatism, childhood with its problems and difficulties, and feminist ideas gaining their momentum during the days of Alice’ creation. ‘Alice in the Wonderland’ is definitely a masterpiece for centuries, and it is no wonder that this miraculous story will continue as a plot for numerous cartoons, films and games for years and years to pass.
Bloom, H 1987, Modern Critical Views. Lewis Carol, New Heaven, New York.
Jackson, R 1988, Fantasy: the Literature of Subversion, Rutledge, London and New York.
Levin, H 2011, ‘Wonderland Revisited’, The Kenyon Review, pp. 591-619.
Macpherson, H 2000,’ Classifying escape: Tillie Olsen’s Yonnondio’, Academic Research Library, vol. 41 no. 3, pp. 263 – 271.
Reider, N 2005, ‘Spirited Away: Film of the Fantastic and Evolving Japanese Folk Symbols’, Film Criticism, pp. 4-29.
Richardson, A 1999, ‘Romanticism and the end of childhood’, Nineteenth-Century Contexts, 21:2, pp. 169-189.
Satoshi, A 2008, ‘Regaining Continuity with the Past: Spirited Away and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’, Bookbird, pp. 23-31.
Schwartz, L 2006, ‘Fantasy, Realism, and the Other in Recent Video Games’, San Diego State University, Space and Culture, vol. 9 no. 3, pp. 313-325.