Now about the dream (and the narration claims directly that Wonderland is a dream, as Alice escapes it only by waking up), and I'm just going to put this out there and invite your thoughts: It's not Alice's dream; it's Carroll's dream.
- A couple of simple notes: "Mary Ann" was a common, generic nickname for a servant girl (also, there's a lot more slang usage ascribed to the name and its other forms, "Mary Anne" and "Marianne," many of which are period appropriate); ferrets were used for hunting rabbits.
- Alice's perspective of her relationship with W. Rabbit is interesting as it changes depending on her size. When she's small, she's intimidated by him; when she's large, she's utterly unconcerned. What might this say about Alice and/or Carroll, or the latter's impressions of the former?
- With the new growth elixir, is Alice projecting her assumptions of Wonderland by past experience onto her present and causing an ordinary draught to do what it does, or does Carroll simply understand that he doesn't need her to have it labeled in order for her to drink it? (Okay, that question was a syntactical mess!)
- Alice can't move about the house as she'd like, and it makes her uncomfortable, and she claims "It was much pleasanter at home." The discomfort and the house being too small for her is, I think, a pretty typical issue for kids, especially as they mature. They want to break free. How can we reconcile Alice's feelings in Wonderland with her feelings in life in this case? They don't align (Alice uncomfortable in a house that doesn't fit her now that she's grown in Wonderland, and Alice comfortable in a house in life despite her growth and development), unless maybe, though not exclusively, you place at least a little of Carroll into the Alice who's currently in Wonderland. Thoughts?
- "Digging for apples" -- two possibilities (and W. Rabbit seems to understand neither): 1, in French, potatoes are apples of the earth; and 2, Irish apples was slang for Irish potatoes, and Pat is an Irish name, not to mention his likely Irish accent, also emphasized here as the Rabbit calls Pat a goose for his pronunciation of "arm."
- The next couple pages don't offer a lot to analyze, but just a perfectly narrated comic sequence. This has always been one of my favorite scenes.
- Notice the continued mention of Dinah and her use as a tool of threat.
- Alice has not forgotten her goal to find the garden, and her plan to get there is perfectly childish: "neatly and simply arranged" and impractical, which is just as well as she won't get there anyway.
- Finally, notice how Alice wishes she could stick around play with the bigger, though still obviously young, puppy (and maybe this is why Carroll keeps it), yet it's just too big and dangerous, and she has to run away, no matter how she regrets leaving it behind.