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Alice in Wonderland and Philosophy: Curiouser and Curiouser Paperback – January 12, 2010


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Alice in Wonderland and Philosophy: Curiouser and Curiouser + The Annotated Alice: The Definitive Edition + Alice's Adventures in Wonderland & Through the Looking-Glass (Bantam Classics)
Price for all three: $37.47

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (January 12, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470558369
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470558362
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 5.9 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #154,727 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

  • Should the Cheshire Cat's grin make us reconsider the nature of reality?

  • Can Humpty Dumpty make words mean whatever he says they mean?

  • Can drugs take us down the rabbit-hole?

  • Is Alice a feminist icon?

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland has fascinated children and adults alike for generations. Why does Lewis Carroll introduce us to such oddities as a blue caterpillar who smokes a hookah, a cat whose grin remains after its head has faded away, and a White Queen who lives backward and remembers forward? Is it all just nonsense? Was Carroll under the influence? This book probes the deeper underlying meaning in the Alice books and reveals a world rich with philosophical life lessons. Tapping into some of the greatest philosophical minds that ever lived—Aristotle, Hume, Hobbes, and Nietzsche—Alice in Wonderland and Philosophy explores life's ultimate questions through the eyes of perhaps the most endearing heroine in all of literature.

To learn more about the Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture series, visit www.andphilosophy.com

About the Author

RICHARD BRIAN DAVIS is an associate professor of philosophy at Tyndale University College and the coeditor of 24 and Philosophy.

WILLIAM IRWIN is a professor of philosophy at King's College in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. He originated the philosophy and popular culture genre of books as coeditor of the bestselling The Simpsons and Philosophy and has overseen recent titles, including Batman and Philosophy, House and Philosophy, and Watchmen and Philosophy.


More About the Author

William Irwin is professor of Philosophy at King's college, Pennsylvania. Irwin's first book, Intentionalist Interpretation: A Philosophical Explanation and Defense (1999), was nominated for the American Philosophical Association Young Scholar's Book Prize. Irwin is best known for having originated the philosophy and popular culture genre of books with Seinfeld and Philosophy (1999), The Simpsons and Philosophy (2001), and The Matrix and Philosophy (2002). He was editor of these books and then General Editor of the Popular Culture and Philosophy Series through Open Court Publishing. In 2006, Irwin left Open Court to become the General Editor of The Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture Series, which includes Metallica and Philosophy (2007)and Black Sabbath and Philosophy (2012), among other volumes. Irwin first theorized the philosophy and pop culture genre in his article "Philosophy as/and/of Popular Culture" in Irwin and Gracia eds. Philosophy and the Interpretation of Popular Culture (2006).

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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The book is written by many talented authors who discuss the underlying meanings in the Alice books.
Melissa
On the surface, Lewis Carroll's classic seems to be just about a young girl who travels down the rabbit hole to discover a new world and a great adventure.
Kate B.
In large part, an entertaining book, part of an intriguing series and certainly a must read for any serious fans of Alice in Wonderland.
cait

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By The Smoking Pen on February 24, 2010
Format: Paperback
Smartly written, loaded with insights, facts, historical references, and a wee bit of conjecture. An excellent companion piece that no Alice in Wonderland fan should be without.

I also highly recommend:

Alice in Verse: The Lost Rhymes of Wonderland -- without question, the best Wonderland/Looking-Glass book since the original.

and

The Annotated Alice: The Definitive Edition -- as its subtitle indicates, this is THE definitive edition of Carroll's original books.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Everyone's_a_critic on September 9, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Sorry, I am going against the grain of the average 4 stars out of 13 reviews as I pen my review. I must be mistaken, but I feel this book is a waste of time. Here's my argument...

First, years ago when the movie 'The Matrix' came out in 1999 (which if you're trying to get a sense of my sensibilities I think is one of the top 5 sci-fi films of all times), a book came out shortly afterwards entitled 'The Matrix and Philosophy' (The Matrix and Philosophy: Welcome to the Desert of the Real (Popular Culture and Philosophy). It was a great book, and gave me a far deeper appreciation of what the Wachowski brothers were up to. The author tied into the clear philosophical messages inserted into the film and expanded upon the themes in a cohesive and relevant way (in spite of the brothers insisting it was just a Kung-fu movie).

As it happens, I am currently in the process of viewing every Alice in Wonderland title available (over 40!) and posting reviews on Amazon of what I learn in the process about how the various manifestations of the Alice story differ from one another. I've formed some opinions of why the Alice story is so compelling and enduring, and now that those thoughts are in my journal I wanted to see what scholars have said about Alice in Wonderland. Because of my positive experience with the Matrix book I picked up this one from the same series.

The first thing I noticed upon glancing at the first page is that there is now a whole 'fill-in-the-blank and Philosophy' series. There's everything from "Metallica and Philosophy" to "Batman and Philosophy". No less than 16 books in the Philosophy series. Uh huh. Someone came up with a great idea....
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Mary Bookhounds VINE VOICE on April 11, 2010
Format: Paperback
Here is another book that came into my house and was instantly claimed by my son. This is a series of essays brings up some excellent points about Lewis Carroll, his history and the impact on today's world. The fact that Alice In Wonderland is still relevant today shows what a great author Carroll was and how thoughtful this child's tale actually is. Of course, there are the expected such as drugs and Alice, but there is the unexpected as well, like nuclear weapons and the Red Queen. I think you may want to go back and reread Alice a few more times after this book.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Kate B. VINE VOICE on June 12, 2010
Format: Paperback
Alice in Wonderland and Philosophy gives readers an in-depth and academic look into the world of Alice in Wonderland. Journey deep into the rabbit hole to discover the lasting effects that Alice in Wonderland has had on our society and its pop culture.

Alice in Wonderland and Philosophy is broken down into four sections, which are then broken down further into essays. Each essay is written by various authors and professors who discuss topics from feminism to philosophy to even drug usage. You may be thinking, what does this have to do with Alice in Wonderland the novel? The truth is a lot. On the surface, Lewis Carroll's classic seems to be just about a young girl who travels down the rabbit hole to discover a new world and a great adventure. But the truth is, as with many novels, the novel is filled with many diverse layers. And it is those layers that Alice in Wonderland and Philosophy discusses.

If you are a die-hard Alice in Wonderland fan, then this is definitely going to be a must read for you. However, those who are looking for an enlightening look at the world of Alice in Wonderland, should definitely give this novel a try. You will not be disappointed.

Alice in Wonderland and Philosophy is very well-written in an academic and intellectual way, but it is never dry. The authors infuse humor and pop culture references through out to keep readers entertained as well as relevant. I had a blast reading this novel, and discovered a new outlook on one of my most beloved tales. Fantastic read!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By David P. Whelan on April 19, 2010
Format: Paperback
Picture a book of philosophy essays by various academics and you might, as I did, have been a bit dubious about what you were about to read. I was utterly taken with Alice in Wonderland and Philosophy, edited by Richard Brian Davis, part of a series of pop culture philosophy books put out by Wiley and edited by Professor William Irwin. Other titles include The Simpsons and Philosophy, Batman and Philosophy, etc.

The book consists of a collection of essays by primarily philosophy and literature faculty and grad students from the US, UK, and Canada. As such, you get a variety of styles and looks at Alice, so if you don't like one, you can quickly skip forward and see what comes next. While I love non-fiction, I found one or two of the essays a bit hard going.

But it was worth it to get through them all. I don't think I have ever learned so much about philosophers like David Hume, or John Locke, or Nietzsche, as I did in the essays that dealt with them. Having philosophy placed in the context of a well-known book, even a fairy tale like Alice, helped to make some concepts like "will to ignorance" and "matters of fact" easy to understand.

Readers will be exposed to quite a variety of philosophers as well, in quick bites as the authors move through their takes on the story. All are well written and many have citations you can follow up, if necessary. Some, like Prof. White's essay, are downright funny. My favorites were Prof. White's essay on procrastination ("Jam Yesterday, Jam Tomorrow"), Profs. Dunn and McDonald's on nonsense ("6 Impossible Things Before Breakfast"), and soon-to-be Dr. Shea's look at inductive reasoning ("Three Ways of Getting it Wrong: Induction in Wonderland"). Also enjoyable was Prof.
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