Lewis Carroll: "We're All Mad Here"

1919 words - 8 pages

“Contrariwise, if it was so, it might be; and if it were so, it would be; but as it isn't, it ain't. That's logic” (www.brainyquote.com). From his world renowned novel Alice in Wonderland and poems, to his creative work in mathematics, Charles Lutwidge Dodgson - known very well by his pen name Lewis Carroll – has become notorious in the world of literature due to his playful situations and nonsensical rhyme. Carroll’s career became so successful to the point where he is the second most referenced author, next to Shakespeare. Despite his success, many people do not know how much of an importance Lewis Carroll had in his time and ours. The success of Lewis Carroll’s bizarre novel Alice in Wonderland can be described by analyzing Carroll’s life, the criticism of his groundbreaking novel, and discovering the cultural impact that the novel had in its time.
Analyzing Carroll’s work starts with knowing the life of Charles Lutwidge Dodgson. “Charles Lutwidge Dodgson was born on January 27, 1832 in Daresbury, Cheshire, England” (http://www.biography.com/people/lewis-carroll-9239598) to Charles and Frances Lutwidge. “Dodgson was the eldest son in a family of eleven children – Four boys and seven girls” (http://www.biography.com/people/lewis-carroll-9239598). Charles and his family lived in the outskirts of town, so they did not have many people to interact with. Charles did his best to entertain his siblings by creating games and riddles so that they could the make the best of their lonesomeness. “Young Dodgson attended Richmond School, Yorkshire (1844-45), and then he proceeded to Rugby School (1846-50)” (http://www.biography.com/people/lewis-carroll-9239598?page=1).
Lewis Carroll could always relate to children better than adults. It was his fascination of kids that inspired Alice in Wonderland. “Dodgson had an early ambition to be an artist. Failing in this, he turned to photography. He photographed children in every possible costume and situation, finally making nude studies of them” (http://www.biography.com/people/lewis-carroll-9239598?page=4). His fascination of kids was evident with his relation with a girl named Alice Liddell, daughter of Robinson Duckworth. On this day, Dodgson and Duckworth “rowed the three children up the Thames from Oxford to Godstow, picnicked on the bank, and returned to Christ Church late in the evening” (http://www.biography.com/people/lewis-carroll-9239598?page=2). “‘on which occasion,’ wrote Dodgson in his diary, ‘I told them the fairy-tale of Alice’s Adventures Underground, which I undertook to write out for Alice’” (http://www.biography.com/people/lewis-carroll-9239598?page=2).
Although accidental, the novel led to Carroll’s rise to fame, as well as the creation of other poems and novels being written. Before writing children’s books, Dodgson wrote many books on mathematics and carried himself as a serious scholar. “Charles Lutwidge Dodgson… used the pen name Lewis Carroll to guard his privacy and to...

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