Lewis Carroll in Turkey: Writing/Drawing Competitions 1998
Lewis Carroll in Turkey: Centenary Celebrations 1998
Extracts from Alice in Wonderland
Anthony Browne on Alice in Wonderland
Laurence Raw on Alice in Wonderland
How Alice in Wonderland was created
Poem: Turtle Soup
on Lewis Carroll's life and work
- Born Charles Lutwidge Dodgson on 27th January. Eldest son and third child
of Charles Dodgson, Curate of Daresbury, Cheshire and Frances Jane (nee
1843 - Family moves to Croft, Yorkshire when father becomes rector at Croft.
to 1845 - from 1st August 1844 attends Richmond School,
Yorkshire. During this time Dodgson wrote a series of magazines to entertain
1846 to 1849 - Starting 27th January 1846 attends Rugby School.
1850 - 23rd May 1850, graduates at Christ Church, Oxford.
1851 - 24th January takes up residence at Christ Church. Mother dies on January 26th.
1854 - Bachelor of Arts, 1st Class Honours in Mathematics, 2nd Class Honours in Classics.
1855 - Becomes sub-librarian to Christ Church and Mathematics lecturer (a position held until 1881).
1856 - First meets the Liddell family in February. Buys a camera in March and takes his first photograph of Alice Liddell in April.
1857 - Master of Arts.
1861 - Is ordained as a deacon on 22nd December.
1862 - Tells the story of Alice's Adventures Under Ground to the Liddell children on a boating trip on 4th July.
1865 - Publication in July of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Reprinted in November, on Tenniel's request, due to poor printing quality of the pictures.
1867 - Undertakes first and only overseas journey from 13th July to 14th September with H.P. Liddon.
1868 - Father dies on 21st June. The family moves to Guildford on the 1st September.
1871 - Publication of Through the Looking-Glass and what Alice Found There in December.
1876 - Publication of The Hunting of the Snark in March.
1881 - Resigns Mathematical Lectureship.
1882 - Becomes Curator of Senior Common Room at Christ Church.
1886 - The original manuscript of Alice's Adventures Under Ground is published.
1889 - Publication of Sylvie and Bruno.
1890 - Publiction of The Nursery Alice (with some of Tenniel's drawings enlarged and coloured).
1892 - Resigns as Curator of Senior Common Room at Christ Church.
1893 - Publication of Sylvie and Bruno Concluded.
1898 - Dies at Guildford on the 14th of January and is buried there.
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Anthony Browne is one of today's most popular children's artists. He has won numerous awards for his work and has been published in many countries.
He was born in Sheffield in 1946 and grew up in Halifax, Yorkshire, where he spent much of his time drawing. He graduated from Leeds College of Art with an honours degree and went back to lecture on graphic design. He then worked in Manchester as a medical artist in a hospital.
It was when he sent some sample greetings cards to the firm of Gordon Fraser that his artistic potential was first recognised and he designed cards for them for several years.
Anthony Browne's first picture book, Through the Magic Mirror
was published by Hamish Hamilton in 1976. Since then he has published numerous
books and received a number of awards. Hansel and Gretel was commended
for the Kate Greenaway Medal and was nominated for the Hans Christian Andersen
Award. Gorilla won the Emill/ Kurt Maschler Award, the Kate Greenaway
Medal, the New York Times Best Illustrated Book and the Boston Globe Award
Honour Book. Piggybook received a Special Mention at the Bologna
Children's Book Fair and won the 1987 Graphic Prize. He won the Emil/ Kurt
Maschler Award for the second time for Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
and the 1993 Kate Greenaway Medal for Zoo (Julia MacRae Books).
Find out more about what Anthony Browne was talking about. Click Here to read an extract from Alice in Wonderland
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From Monday 5 October until Friday 9 October 1998 Laurence Raw and Pinar
Ussakli of the British Council, Ankara, gave a series of workshops in schools
in Ankara and Istanbul on Lewis Carroll and Alice in Wonderland in
Istanbul and Ankara. They used their own material, plus material
supplied by the children's book illustrator Anthony Browne. For material
used in these workshops, click here.
Click Here For a profile of Anthony Browne
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The Modern Dance Company of the Turkish State Opera and Ballet performed the dance version of Alice in Wonderland. Michael Popper directed and choreographed the production; he re-named it Alice in Ankara. The premiere took place at the Ankara State Theatre on 19 October 1998.
Here is what Michael Popper had to say about Alice in Ankara:
Alice in Ankara is a movement-theatre piece which I have made in the spirit of Lewis Carrolls Alice writings. The twenty-four short scenes in this new work for Modern Dans Toplulugu (MDT) reflect the structure and, to a great extent, the content of the two Alice books. Both the company and I have aimed for a Carorollian dream-like sense and, indeed, nonsense in the fluidity of our images. I have designed this work as a tribute to, rather than a representation of, Carrolls life and work; if Alice in Ankara can inspire you to read (or re-read) your Alice books, I am delighted; It would not be a substitute for reading the book, but the piece has its own story to tell, and its own point of view - that of an Englishman in Turkey.
With the British Councils support, I have
been working with the dancers of MDT since its inception more than five
years ago; now, we all know each other rather well! We have very much made
this work together the dancers contribution has been enormous and
have created a special place where Turkishness meets Englishness; this
is the world of Alice In Ankara.
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To coincide with the Lewis Carroll workshops, given by the British Council in Istanbul and Ankara in October 1998, the secondary school of Middle East Technical University, Ankara, organised both a writing and a painting competition, based on Alice in Wonderland for some of its students. The winners of the writing competition received their prizes at a workshop/ poetry reading, staged by the British Council on 24 October 1998.
Here are some pictures of the workshop, given by Laurence Raw and Gülfem
Aslan of the British Council, the seven winning entries of the writing
competition, plus eight of the best pictures. We are very grateful
to the secondary school of Middle East Technical University for allowing
us to publish them.
Choose from the following pieces of writing:
PRESENTS FOR WONDERLAND
ADVENTURES OF ALICE
MY DISLIKED CHARACTER IN LEWIS CARROLL'S ALICE IN WONDERLAND
ALICE AND THE ARROGANT CATERPILLAR
WHAT I TAKE WITH ME
ALICE IN MURDERLAND
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It was a beautiful day
Alice wanted to play
But she was very curious
So she ran after the rabbit that looked serious.
Then she fell down a hole,
But what to do she didn't know,
Suddenly she cried "oh, oh",
And made a lot of water flow.
Then she tried to eat
The thing smelled like meat.
But she didn't know if this would work
And she suddenly started to flow on her skirt.
This food made her tiny
And suddenly she looked very funny.
But she didn't have fun at all,
When she listened to the story told by Tweedledee and Tweedledum.
After an hour,
She met the March Hare and the Hatter
She thought that she was clever
More than any March Hare or Hatter.
Alice had many adventures in Wonderland,
She wished this would never end,
She understood that,
This was just a dream but,
She wanted it to be real a lot
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I disliked the rabbit character, in Lewis Carroll's Alice in
Wonderland. I disliked Mr. Rabbit, because he ran away from Alice.
If I were Alice and fell into a place I've never seen or heard about, I
think I would feel embarrassed. And if I were Alice and saw a talking
rabbit, who didn't want to talk to me, I would honestly hate it.
In real life, I also don't like rabbits. I think their appearance is a little unsympathetic. The rabbit in the tale has glasses, a watch, white gloves and an umbrella. The sweetness of it is only his talking style and forgetfulness. Mr. Rabbit talks in a fast way. About his forgetfulness I can say that he always forgets his gloves, umbrella and even Alice's name. Mr. Rabbit calls Alice Marianne.
I don't like him in one way too, he wants to be good in the Queen's eyes. I hate that kind of people. I know there must be a character like Mr. Rabbit, so I don't blame Mr. Carroll, but what can I do? I've never liked rabbits.
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"You are an arrogant creature Mr. Caterpillar," said Alice,
"And you have a very bad temper;
And yet, you helped me when I needed to grow,
Should I like or dislike you, I surely don't know?"
"You are only three inches high," said Alice,
"And you act like as if you are six foot tall;
And yet, I admire your pride and content,
Should I ignore your rudeness or not, I really don't know?"
"You are so unpleasant and contemptuous," said Alice,
"And your feelings are so different to mine;
And yet, you sounded promising when I needed you,
Should I believe in you or not, I really don't know?"
"You are not very encouraging when you talk," said Alice,
"And you make short remarks and irritate me;
And yet, you do not feel queer when you change,
Should I be offended or not, I really don't know?"
"You are not very smart with the hookah in your mouth,
And yet, you do not seem to understand its harm;
And you should know how this affects your body,
Should I tell you this or not, I surely think I should."
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So many years just passed by
But still I sit alone.
I look through the window to the sky
And hear my soul's groan.
In those dark nights I just recall
My distant childhood.
And if someone told me to go
Right back of course I would.
I still look back to my old dreams
Which collapsed at the end.
I still remember how I flew
Alone to Wonderland.
I was small Alice all that time
I lived in a land of joy.
I'd chase the rabbits in the holes
And speak to my old toy.
I'd change my size so many times,
I met a queen of hearts,
I used to colour roses red
With a little pile of cards.
I used to talk to the Cheshire Cat
And play cricket with the Queen.
I saw strange creatures, beasts and brutes
I've never ever seen.
I had to run to find my way
To court I once was sent
But like all dreams, all sweet sweet dreams
This dream, too, had to end.
But still I'm not heartbroken, though.
I'm not unhappy, sad.
I can't say I'm blaming time,
I can't say I regret.
Because we all just have to live
Live! That's all I can say.
No turning back cause God gave us
A ticket for one way.
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THE Caterpillar and Alice looked at each other for some time
in silence: at last the Caterpillar took the hookah out of its mouth, and
addressed her in a languid, sleepy voice.
"Who are you?" said the Caterpillar.
This was not an encouraging opening for a conversation. Alice replied, rather shyly, "I - I hardly know, Sir, just at present - at least I know who I was when I got up this morning, but I think I must have been changed several times since then."
"What do you mean by that?" said the Caterpillar, sternly. "Explain yourself!"
"I can't explain myself, I'm afraid, Sir," said Alice, "because I'm not myself, you see."
"I don't see," said the Caterpillar.
"I'm afraid I can't put it more clearly," Alice replied, very politely, "for I can't understand it myself, to begin with; and being so many different sizes in a day is very confusing."
"It isn't," said the Caterpillar.
"Well, perhaps you haven't found it so yet," said Alice; "but when you have to turn into a chrysalis - you will some day, you know - and then after that into a butterfly, I should think you'll feel it a little queer, won't you?"
"Not a bit," said the Caterpillar.
"Well, perhaps your feelings may be different," said Alice: "all I know is, it would feel very queer to me."
"You!" said the Caterpillar contemptuously. "Who are you?"
Which brought them back again to the beginning of the conversation. Alice felt a little irritated at the Caterpillar's making such very short remarks, and she drew herself up and said, very gravely, "I think you ought to tell me who you are, first."
"Why?" said the Caterpillar.
Here was another puzzling question; and, as Alice could not think of any good reason, and the Caterpillar seemed to be in a very unpleasant state of mind, she turned away.
"Come back!" the Caterpillar called after her. "I've something important to say!"
This sounded promising, certainly. Alice turned and came back again.
"Keep your temper," said the Caterpillar.
"Is that all?" said Alice, swallowing down her anger as well as she could.
"No," said the Caterpillar.
Alice thought she might as well wait, as she had nothing else to do, and perhaps after all it might tell her something worth hearing. For some minutes it puffed away without speaking; but at last it unfolded its arms, took the hookah out of its mouth again, and said
"So you think you're changed, do you?"
"I'm afraid I am, Sir," said Alice. "I can't remember things as I used - and I don't keep the same size for ten minutes together!"
"Can't remember what things?" said the Caterpillar.
"Well, I've tried to say 'How doth the little busy bee,' but it all came different!" Alice replied in a very melancholy voice.
"Repeat 'You are old, Father William,'" said the Caterpillar.
Alice folded her hands, and began:
"You are old, Father William," the young man said,
"And your hair has become very white;
And yet you incessantly stand on your head -
Do you think, at your age, it is right?"
"In my youth," Father William replied to his son,
"I feared it might injure the brain;
But, now that I'm perfectly sure I have none,
Why, I do it again and again."
"You are old," said the youth, "as I mentioned before,
And have grown most uncommonly fat;
Yet you turned a back-somersault in at the door -
Pray, what is the reason of that?"
"In my youth," said the sage, as he shook his grey locks,
"I kept all my limbs very supple
By the use of this ointment - one shilling the box -
Allow me to sell you a couple?"
"You are old," said the youth, "and your jaws are too weak
For anything tougher than suet;
Yet you finished the goose, with the bones and the beak -
Pray, how did you manage to do it?"
"In my youth," said his father, "I took to the law,
And argued each case with my wife;
And the muscular strength, which it gave to my jaw
Has lasted the rest of my life."
"You are old," said the youth, "one would hardly suppose
That your eye was as steady as ever;
Yet you balanced an eel on the end of your nose -
What made you so awfully clever?"
"I have answered three questions, and that is enough,"
Said his father. "Don't give yourself airs!
Do you think I can listen all day to such stuff?
Be off, or I'll kick you down-stairs!"
"That is not said right," said the Caterpillar.
"Not quite right, I'm afraid," said Alice, timidly: "some of the words have got altered."
"It is wrong from beginning to end," said the Caterpillar, decidedly; and there was silence for some minutes.
The Caterpillar was the first to speak.
"What size do you want to be?" it asked.
"Oh, I'm not particular as to size," Alice hastily replied; "only one doesn't like changing so often, you know."
"I don't know," said the Caterpillar.
Alice said nothing: she had never been so much contradicted in all her life before, and she felt that she was losing her temper.
"Are you content now?" said the Caterpillar.
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THERE was a table set out under a tree in front of the house,
and the March Hare and the Hatter were having tea at it: a Dormouse was
sitting between them, fast asleep, and the other two were using it as a
cushion, resting their elbows on it, and talking over its head.
"Very uncomfortable for the Dormouse," thought Alice; "only as it's asleep, I suppose it doesn't mind."
The table was a large one, but the three were all crowded together at one corner of it. "No room! No room!" they cried out when they saw Alice coming. "There's plenty of room!" said Alice indignantly, and she sat down in a large arm-chair at one end of the table.
"Have some wine," the March Hare said in an encouraging tone.
Alice looked all round the table, but there was nothing on it but tea. "I don't see any wine," she, remarked.
"There isn't any," said the March Hare.
"Then it wasn't very civil of you to offer it," said Alice angrily.
"It wasn't very civil of you to sit down without being invited," said the March Hare.
"I didn't know it was your table," said Alice: "it's laid for a great many more than three."
"Your hair wants cutting," said the Hatter. He had been looking at Alice for some time with great curiosity, and this was his first speech.
"You should learn not to make personal remarks," Alice said with some severity: "It's very rude."
The Hatter opened his eyes very wide on hearing this; but all said was "Why is a raven like a writing-desk?"
"Come, we shall have some fun now!" thought Alice. "I'm glad they've begun asking riddles - I believe I can guess that," she added aloud.
"Do you mean that you think you can find out the answer to it?" said the March Hare.
"Exactly so," said Alice.
"Then you should say what you mean," the March Hare went on.
"I do," Alice hastily replied; "at least - at least I mean what I say - that's the same thing, you know."
"Not the same thing a bit!" said the Hatter. "Why, you might just as well say that 'I see what I eat' is the same thing as 'I eat what I see'!"
"You might just as well say," added the March Hare, "that 'I like what I get' is the same thing as 'I get what I like'!"
"You might just as well say," added the Dormouse, which seemed to be talking in its sleep, "that 'I breathe when I sleep' is the same thing as 'I sleep when I breathe'!"
"It is the same thing with you," said the Hatter, and here the conversation dropped, and the party sat silent for a minute, while Alice thought over all she could remember about ravens and writing-desks, which wasn't much.
The Hatter was the first to break the silence. "What day of the month is it?" he said, turning to Alice: he had taken his watch out of his pocket, and was looking at it uneasily, shaking it every now and then, and holding it to his ear.
Alice considered a little, and then said "The fourth."
"Two days wrong!" sighed the Hatter. "I told you butter wouldn't suit the works!" he added, looking angrily at the March Hare.
"It was the best butter," the March Hare meekly replied.
"Yes, but some crumbs must have got in as well," the Hatter grumbled: "you shouldn't have put it in with the bread-knife."
The March Hare took the watch and looked at it gloomily: then he dipped it into his cup of tea, and looked at it again: but he could think of nothing better to say than his first remark, "It was the best butter, you know."
Alice had been looking over his shoulder with some curiosity.
"What a funny watch!" she remarked. "It tells the day of the month, and doesn't tell what o'clock it is!"
"Why should it?" muttered the Hatter. "Does your watch tell you what year it is?"
"Of course not," Alice replied very readily: "but that's because it stays the same year for such a long time together."
"Which is just the case with mine," said the Hatter.
Alice felt dreadfully puzzled. The Hatter's remark seemed to her to have no sort of meaning in it, and yet it was certainly English. "I don't quite understand you," she said, as politely as she could.
"The Dormouse is asleep again," said the Hatter, and he poured a little hot tea upon its nose.
The Dormouse shook its head impatiently, and said, without opening its eyes, "Of course, of course: just what I was going to remark myself."
"Have you guessed the riddle yet?" the Hatter said, turning to Alice again.
"No, I give it up," Alice replied. "What's the answer?"
"I haven't the slightest idea," said the Hatter.
"Nor I," said the March Hare.
Alice sighed wearily. "I think you might do something better with the time," she said, "than wasting it in asking riddles that have no answers."
"If you knew Time as well as I do," said the Hatter, "you wouldn't talk about wasting it. It's him."
"I don't know what you mean," said Alice.
You know the song, perhaps?"
"I've heard something like it," said Alice.
"It goes on, you know," the Hatter continued, "in this way:-
'Up above the world you fly,
Like a tea-tray in the sky.
Twinkle, twinkle -'"
Here the Dormouse shook itself, and began singing in its "Twinkle, twinkle, twinkle, twinkle -" and went on so long that they had to pinch it to make it stop.
"Well, I'd hardly finished the first verse," said the Hatter, "when the Queen bawled out 'He's murdering the time! Off with his head!'"
"How dreadfully savage!" exclaimed Alice.
"And ever since that," the Hatter went on in a mournful tone, "he won't do a thing I ask! It's always six o'clock now."
A bright idea came into Alice's head. "Is that the reason so many tea-things are put out here!" she asked.
"Yes, that's it," said the Hatter with a sigh: "it's always tea-time, and we've no time to wash the things between whiles."
"Then you keep moving round, I suppose?" said Alice.
"Exactly so," said the Hatter: "as the things get used up."
"But what happens when you come to the beginning again?" Alice ventured to ask.
"Suppose we change the subject," the March Hare interrupted, yawning. "I'm getting tired of this. I vote thee young lady tells us a story."
"I'm afraid I don't know one," said Alice, rather alarmed at the proposal.
"Then the Dormouse shall!" they both cried. "Wake up, Dormouse!" And they pinched it on both sides at once.
The Dormouse slowly opened its eyes. "I wasn't asleep," it said in a hoarse, feeble voice, "I heard every word you fellows were saying."
"Tell us a story!" said the March Hare.
"Yes, please do!" pleaded Alice.
"And be quick about it," added the Hatter, "or you'll be asleep again before it's done."
"Once upon a time there were three little sisters," the Dormouse and they lived at the bottom of a well -"
"What did they live on?" said Alice, who always took a great interest in questions of eating and drinking.
"They lived on treacle," said the Dormouse, after thinking a minute or two.
"They couldn't have done that, you know," Alice gently remarked. "They'd have been have ill."
"So they were," said the Dormouse; "very ill."
Alice tried a little to fancy to herself what such an extraordinary way of living would be like, but it puzzled her too much: so she went on: "But why did they live at the bottom of a well?"
"Take some more tea," the March Hare said to Alice, very earnestly.
"I've had nothing yet," Alice replied in an offended tone: "so I can't take more."
"You mean you can't take less," said the Hatter: "it's very easy to take more than nothing."
"Nobody asked your opinion," said Alice.
"Who's making personal remarks now!" the Hatter asked triumphantly.
Alice did not quite know what to say to this: so she helped herself to some tea and bread-and-butter, and then turned to the Dormouse, and repeated her question. "Why did they live at the bottom of a well?"
The Dormouse again took a minute or two to think about it, and then said "It was a treacle-well."
"There's no such thing!" Alice was beginning very angrily, but the Hatter and the March Hare went "Sh! Sh!" and the Dormouse sulkily remarked "If you can't be civil, you'd better finish the story for yourself."
"No, please go on!" Alice said very humbly. "I won't interrupt you again. I dare say there may be one."
"One, indeed!" said the Dormouse indignantly. However, he consented to go on. "And so these three little sisters - they were learning to draw, you know -"
"What did they draw?" said Alice, quite forgetting her promise.
"Treacle," said the Dormouse, without considering at all, this time.
"I want a clean cup," interrupted the Hatter: "let's all move one place on."
He moved on as he spoke, and the Dormouse followed him: the March Hare moved into the Dormouse's place, and Alice rather unwillingly took the place of the March Hare. The Hatter was the only one who got any advantage from the change; and Alice was a good deal worse off than before, as the March Hare had just upset the milk-jug into his plate.
Alice did not wish to offend the Dormouse again, so she began very cautiously: "But I don't understand. Where did they draw the treacle from?"
"You can draw water out of a water-well," said the Hatter; "so I should think you could draw treacle out of a treacle well - eh, stupid?"
"But they were in the well," Alice said to the Dormouse, not choosing to notice this last remark.
"Of course they were," said the Dormouse: "well in."
This answer so confused poor Alice, that she let the Dormouse go on for some time without interrupting it.
"They were learning to draw," the Dormouse went on, yawning and rubbing its eyes, for it was getting very sleepy; "and they drew all manner of things - everything that begins with an M -"
"Why with an M?" said Alice.
"Why not?" said the March Hare.
Alice was silent.
The Dormouse had closed its eyes by this time, and was going off into a doze; but, on being pinched by the Hatter, it woke up again with a little shriek, and went on: "- that begins with an M, such as mouse-traps, and the moon, and memory, and muchness - you know you say things are 'much of a muchness' - did you ever see such a thing as a drawing of a muchness!"
"Really, now you ask me," said Alice, very much confused, "I don't think -"
"Then you shouldn't talk," said the Hatter.
This piece of rudeness was more than Alice could bear: she got up in great disgust, and walked off: the Dormouse fell asleep instantly, and neither of the others took the least notice of her going, though she looked back once or twice, half hoping that they would call after her: the last time she saw them, they were trying to put the Dormouse into the teapot.
"At any rate I'll never go there again!" said Alice, as she picked her way through the wood. "It's the stupidest tea-party I ever was at in all my life!"
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I was asked to illustrate the book in 1987. I had at that time written and illustrated fourteen picture books, each with thirty-two pages, and not many words, so this project was to be quite a big change for me. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland had been a startling revelation to me when I first read it as an eight year-old child. Suddenly here was a secret world that no-one have ever talked about to me before. It was a world that I recognised, but one that I didn't think anyone else knew about. I've since read many other books that attempt to describe dreams, but none of them are as convincing as this one. You would think that cinema, with all its expensive, hi-tech special effects could more accurately convey the feeling of dreams than mere words on a page, but no film that I've ever seen has come close to Carroll's wonderful, terrifying, hilarious novel.
Of all the books I've published, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland is the one that I felt the most worried about. I was illustrating somebody else's text for the first time, it was the first long novel I'd ever worked on, and I was illustrating one of the best books ever written for children. It was illustrated brilliantly the first time, by John Tenniel, and most people think of Alice in Wonderland through the imagery of Tenniel's illustrations or Walt Disney's animated film. I was also aware that it had been illustrated over a hundred times before, so part of me was asking do we need another illustrated version of this great book? Tenniel and Carroll had worked very closely together on the book, and as a result the words and the pictures fit together extremely well. The one advantage that a modern illustrator has is that he or she can work in colour. The whole story is of a dream and most people dream in colour. So I decided to concentrate on the dream aspects of the book. In many of my own stories I had used a dreamlike quality in my pictures to help to tell the story .
I decided to illustrate the book in a Surrealist style. I began work by re-reading the book again and again, trying to decide which parts I wanted to illustrate. I also looked at other illustrator's versions of the book .
After studying all these other attempts I returned to the first version by John Tenniel, as it seemed to me to be easily the best. Many of them (although not the ones I've shown), were obviously heavily influenced by the original pictures so one of my main problems was how I was to avoid being too influenced by Tenniel?
MY MAD HATTER'S TEA-PARTY
This is the Mad Hatter's tea-party and for the figure of the Mad Hatter I tried to get round the Tenniel image by getting rid of his top-hat and replacing it with lots of different hats; and suggesting his madness by splitting his face into one half happy, and one half sad. Interestingly I later learned, after the book was published, that a friend of Lewis Carroll had written of him that the "two sides of his face looked as if they belonged to two different people."
At this tea party and throughout the book I wanted to play the same sort of games that Lewis Carroll was playing. I tried to give the reader an active involvement in each illustration, so there are puzzle pictures, and 'spot the difference' pictures, hidden pictures, and visual puns which I used to try and echo Carroll's verbal puns.
Tenniel's drawing of Alice talking to the caterpillar is quite different from Carroll's. Whilst Lewis Carroll drew the front view of the caterpillar, with a rather unlikely human face; by turning the creature round so we see the back view, Tenniel was cleverly able to suggest the nose, mouth and forehead by using the caterpillar's feet seen in silhouette. This conveys a much more realistic impression of a caterpillar, and gives the illustration great power.
To illustrate the Father William poem in Alice I've used the same room,
but where in Magritte's picture the room stays the same in mine there
are some changes. The painting on the wall changes, so does the vase
of flowers; the stove has been changed into the young man, and something
very strange has happened to the table-leg.
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I first encountered Alice in Wonderland when, as a child, the book was read to me during a 'story-time' period in primary school.
For most of the time, we had a teacher who ruled the class with strict discipline: everyone had to give in their work on time, answer questions when asked, and try hard to make as little superfluous noise as possible. That is ... except for that one period on a Monday afternoon when the teacher, a Miss Brightman, read a story to us. She was very keen on the classic works of children's literature, and Alice in Wonderland was one of her favourite texts. I remember that she became something of an actress during that period - impersonating all the voices, and turning the whole lesson into a one-person performance which held all of us spellbound. Thus Alice in Wonderland had at least two significant memories for me; it provided an opportunity for a teacher to reveal her true self, as opposed to the official 'teacherly' persona, and it gave all of us children a respite from the daily grind of work, work, work.
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This dreamy afternoon, when Dodgson sent "his heroine straight down a rabbit-hole, to begin with, without the least idea of what was to happen afterwards" (as he later put it), is described in the official weather records as cool and rainy, but those involved remembered it as a blazingly sunny day, with a heat haze shimmering over the meadow at Godstow. In reality or in the glow of memory it truly was the golden afternoon that Dodgson conjures up in the introductory poem to Alice in Wonderland. The warmth of the sun, the gentle rocking of the boat, the murmur of the river, the rapt listeners together stimulated that great mind to an unparalleled flood of mingled logic and whimsy.
In a reminiscence published years later, Alice said that the stories he told that afternoon must have been even better than usual, since she remembered the trip so well, and because she begged Mr. Dodgson to write down the tale for her. Perhaps it just seemed better, being the adventures of an extraordinary girl named Alice, whereas the stories from other days, according to Dodgson, had "lived and died, like summer midges". It was indeed Alice's pleading that led the storyteller to write down this one tale. He set to work on it the next day.
By the end of 1863, with the urging of MacDonald, Dodgson had found a publisher for Alice, the London firm of Macmillan. He now set about revising and preparing the text. Although the first version of the manuscript was completed in the spring of 1863, the illustrations caused Dodgson considerable anguish. His well-developed artistic taste made his own shortcomings as a draughtsman all too obvious to him, so, with publication in mind, he undertook to find a professional illustrator. In early 1864 Tom Taylor, a playwright and editor of the humorous magazine Punch, introduced him to a Punch cartoonist named John Tenniel.
By mid-December 1863 the friendship between Dodgson and the Liddell girls was over. The Liddells may have asked him to keep company less often with the girls as they grew up . Dodgson had earlier agreed with the Liddells that Lorina, now 14, was too old to be seen any longer with a gentleman unchaperoned . Dodgson was sensitive, the temper of the times was strict, and the Liddells were ready for the nursery entertainer to fade away and allow the older girls to become young ladies.
Whatever may have occurred, the rupture was not complete. In mid-December Dodgson had dinner at the Deanery and passed a very pleasant evening with the children and Mrs. Liddell. In May he encountered the three older girls and their governess on a walk and chatted with them. This must have given him hope that the old days might resume, for the following week he records that for several days he had been asking in vain for permission for a river trip. He had invited the three younger girls, Alice, Edith and Rhoda, "but Mrs. Liddell will not let any come in the future - rather superfluous caution." This remark suggests that the Liddells' concern for Lorina's reputation was the cause of the quarrel.
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