I humbly acknowledge that these questions are asked remarkably inefficiently but declaim irresponsibly that I intend not to change them.
- More (see question 2 on "The Great Ugly") on the importance of appearances here, as three cards--gardeners--frantically paint mistakenly-planted white roses red. Is this a parallel case to that of the previous post?
- Disregarding Tenniel's illustration, what does it mean to "be-head" a non-face-card (impertinent question)?
- What would be the difference between Alice laying on her face (contrary to what may be minimally proper) like the cards? What are the cards--gardeners--attempting to do, really, by prostrating themselves? This introduces an interesting issue (and this also ties into the next question): what is going on with the utter lack of variety when their backs are turned: "she could not tell whether they were gardeners, or soldiers, or courtiers, or three of her own children."
- The general community of Wonderland is very diverse, and I've never thought of it as one inclusive group until now, perhaps fittingly, having just finished Jane Eyre. Describe this community in terms of how it fits within the format of a typical Victorian region and/or countryside. Which type of people perhaps have more substance than others, and what commentary is Carroll making? (Grammatical aside (trick question, subject to grammatical subjectivity): is there a way to rewrite "what commentary is Carroll making" without splitting the infinitive, "is making," and without going into the dangerous waters of The Passive?)
- Interesting choice of words: "How should I know? It's no business of mine," which, of course, comes across as rude; couldn't she have simply referred (*another ridiculous verbal split*) to the impossibility of distinguishing them in such a state.
- Apart from the primary argument at hand (in chapter, in book, in "series"), are the Alice books inappropriate for children? Gardner humorously offers: "'I pictured to myself the Queen of Hearts,' Carroll wrote in his article 'Alice on the Stage,' 'as a sort of embodiment of ungovernable passion--a blind and aimless Fury.' Her constant orders for beheadings are shocking to those modern critics of children's literature who feel that juvenile fiction should be free of all violence and especially violence with Freudian undertones. Even the Oz books of L. Frank Baum, so singularly free of the horrors to be found in Grimm and Andersen, contain many scenes of decapitation. As far as I know, there have been no empirical studies of how children react to such scenes and what harm if any is done to their psyche. My guess is that the normal child finds it all very amusing and is not damaged in the least, but that books like Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and The Wizard of Oz should not be allowed to circulate indiscriminately among adults who are undergoing analysis."
- Is there any way for the King of Hearts to be other than timid in the face of his spouse? (Poor man!)
- What is Carroll doing to/with/by Alice when he writes her as contradicting, and effectively so, the Queen? Consider also that the Queen shifts from ordering the offing of her head to inviting her to play Croquet.
- "The Knave did so, very carefully, with one foot." I expect there's a fair level of bigotry between the four suits of cards in the deck.
- "Their heads are gone, if it please your Majesty!"
- How do you suppose W. Rabbit feels now that Alice has been invited to play?
- Is it such a "great wonder," as Alice believes, that there are any members of the deck of cards yet alive?
- Notice the King's lack of ability--or authority--in the removal of the cat and his subsequent deferment to his wife.
- What of the court's petition to Alice to solve their problem?
|by Bill Waterson: Calvinball|