Appearing Otherwise: Alice is Now The Woman in Wonderland

Emily R. Aguilo-Perez


The Alice books are among the most adapted texts in history; yet, despite the myriad of interpretations offered by critics for the Alice stories, discussions of their film adaptations have been largely overlooked. It is evident that the character Alice has been transformed into many different persons, each of them reflecting what the particular creator thinks she is, and also how the character of Alice can be seen through the popular culture of the time.

This paper explores the growth and changes of the Alice character in two film adaptations of the Alice books – Alice (2009) directed by Nick Willing and Alice in Wonderland (2010) directed by Tim Burton. It argues that the new adult Alice of these adaptations is the result of the images created by audiences, filmmakers, interpreters of Carroll’s work, biographers, and anyone who has constructed their own version of the character and her background story. As a result, Alice is not who she was anymore, but popular culture’s idea of who she is. These adaptations say more about the times in which they were created and the cultural views of childhood than about the Alice whom Carroll created.

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The Looking Glass: new perspectives on children's literature

ISBN 1551-5680