* Whilst Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland is agreed by all to be a prime example of literary nonsense, there exist a one hundred and fifty year-old debate as to whether there is a deeper meaning to it, rather than just being written for a child’s entertainment.
There is a deeper meaning to Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland than what meets the eye. Although, there is a bountiful amount of symbolism to explore, we shall sharpen our focus on the following triad: Alice’s growth, her immaturity, and her understanding.
To begin with, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland is rich in symbols for growth. As one of the most prominent moments in the book, readers can recall that Alice’s height increases and decreases multiple times throughout the story when she consumes the cake and mystery liquid. One might view this as simply another nonsensical plot tool to progress Alice forward in her journey through Wonderland. However, perhaps we should view it from a different perspective. Consider the fact that Alice is often unhappy with her sporadic spouts* of growth and …show more content…
Despite the fact that Alice is considerably more mature than her animal counterparts, she still has a ways to go. There are numerous instances of symbolism throughout the book that exhibit this. For example, when the Duchess’ baby is not in Alice’s care, Alice is empathic and worried in regards to the baby’s well being, but as soon as the responsibility of the child is relinquished to Alice, the baby transforms into a pig. At this development, Alice “set the little creature down, and felt quite relieved to see it trot away quietly in the wood. ‘If it has grown up,’ she said to herself, ‘it would have made a dreadfully ugly child” (Carroll 32). The symbolism here is in the fact that although Alice is maturing, she is not ready to care for a child. Additional proof for her immaturity are the three characters Alice converses with at the shore of her “pool of tears” (Carroll 10). They are symbolic of the phases teenagers and young adulthoods pass through as they age. The lory, mouse, and dodo respectively represent the arrogance, timidness, and recklessness that characterizes these stages in mental and emotional development before