'But I don't want to go among mad people', Alice remarked.
'Oh, you can't help that', said the Cat: 'we're all mad here. I'm mad. You're mad.'
'How do you know I'm mad?', said Alice.
'You must be', said the Cat, 'or you wouldn't have come here'.
Alice in Wonderland
by Lewis Carroll, otherwise known as the Reverend Charles Lutwidge Dodgson
The actual title of this work is Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, and its companion volume is Through the Looking Glass.
Illustrated by John Tenniel, the books describe Alice's adventures in a nonsensical world, with the White Rabbit, the Mad Hatter, the Cheshire Cat and the Red Queen.
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland may be said to be the definitive work of English literature in the modern age. It is said that there are more references to Alice in English literature than any other work, with the exception of the Bible.
As with all great literature, Alice may be read on multiple levels. At its most base, er... basic level we have the Disney cartoon, which managed to drag not only the literature but also the wonderful illustrations to a most primitive form. At the other end, we have scholarly debate by such notables as GK Chesterton, and works such as the Annotated Alice, which deal with the social satire in the book, Freudian symbolism and the like.
What is the truth about Alice? You may develop a life philosophy with the help of regular readings of Alice. You may read it to your children as a bedtime story. You may play chess as you read Through the Looking Glass. You may delight in the vast store of poetry, and characters such as the wonderous Jabberwock, the Walrus and the Carpenter, and Tweedledum and Tweedledee! The stories will keep you entertained for hours. The poem 'Jabberwocky' alone goes on and on, and has been translated into several languages. There are two Latin versions...