In 1862 Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, a shy Oxford mathematician with a stammer, created a story about a little girl tumbling down a rabbit hole. Thus began the immortal adventures of Alice, perhaps the most popular heroine in English literature. Countless scholars have tried to define the charm of the Alice books--with those wonderfully eccentric characters the Queen of Hearts, Tweedledum and Tweedledee, the Cheshire Cat, Mock Turtle, the Mad Hatter et al.--by proclaiming that they really comprise a satire on language, a political allegory, a parody of Victorian children's literature, even a reflection of contemporary ecclesiastical history. Perhaps, as Dodgson might have said, Alice is no more than a dream, a fairy tale about a trials and tribulations of growing up--or down, or all tumed round--as seen through the expert eyes of a child. From the Paperback edition.Carroll, Lewis is the author of 'Alice in Wonderland', published 1992 under ISBN 9780393958041 and ISBN 0393958043.