I’ve mentioned a few times that AIW is 150 years old this year, which has led to projects like this and exhibits like this. Because Harvard owns a lot of Lewis Carroll materials, The Boston Globe has been printing articles about the books and author. Claire’s mom has been sending her clippings that Claire shared with me. I couldn’t access some of them online for everyone to see, but I did get this one about the incredible number of translations of the Alice books: article on alice translations. I was actually lucky enough to see the Harvard exhibit in person this summer, so I’m also including here a few of my own (not very good) photos:
The description of the royal inhabitants of Wonderland as physical playing cards suggests the concept of a house of cards. Rule and expectation are structured very carefully, and even a single card “out of place” within the house will likely catalyze a collapse of the structure as it were. Alice is clearly the card which actively disrupts the order (or the order of disorder that is Wonderland), and this dynamic is exhibited finally and most directly with the event of Alice’s exit from Wonderland, as she bluntly accuses the queen, king, and subjects of being nothing more than a pack of cards. She willfully illegitimatizes their authority, which releases her from Wonderland, and, from one perspective, subverts its entire construct. All of this suggests that in some situations, figures of authority maintain their power because those whom they govern simply and consistently allow them the power and authority.