The Blog of the LCSNA

Far-Flung Knight

Jett Jackson: Stuck in Wonderland

Welcome to the LCSNA’s blog, where you can read regular updates about Lewis Carroll’s influence on all aspects of life.  Please keep in mind that these posts are informational only; we do not endorse any link, statement or product cited below unless we specifically state that within the post. Also, the bloggers do not speak for the LCSNA as a whole. We hope you’ll visit often to review the posts and add comments.

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To submit items for our blog, please email us at blogmaster@lewiscarroll.org.

The Blog of the LCSNA

Keys to It All!

PimpMyKeyboard’s “UnAlice” is a set of “dye-sublimated keycaps inspired by Alice in Wonderland. The spindly Victorian type is complemented nicely by illustrated function and meta keys featuring the White Rabbit, the Hookah-Smoking Caterpillar, and other usual suspects.” Individual keycaps are also for sale; perhaps you’d like to put the White Rabbit falling down a hole over your “Esc” key.

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News from Toontown!

Two posts by Jim Korkis in the Cartoon Research blog might be of historical interest: “The Disney ‘Alice in Wonderland’ Never Made” and “Aldous Huxley’s Version of the Disney ‘Alice’.”

But if your taste is more towards animations that actually were made (and within the last few months at that!), try Wonder Land, a film by Rico Schwartzberg, illustrated by Christopher Carroll.

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Looking-Glass Sesquicentenary Conference (online)

This conference, organized by Dr Franziska Kohlt, will take place on the 4th and 5th of November. Hosted by the University of York (UK), all talks and associated events will be held fully online. Contributions will be a mixture of traditional academic papers and alternative formats. Confirmed speakers thus far include Charlie Lovett and Dianne Waggoner.

“The Looking-Glass itself will be the focal point of the conference. Aiming to explore the significance of the mirror in literature, science, theology, art and other fields, it will explore any facets of this concept that were relevant to ideas that shaped Carroll’s work, or, which have since been integral to its interpretation at different points in time.

“We particularly also invite reflections from practitioners, including creators of adaptations of the text, professionals in translation, museum studies, librarians, fashion, as well as from performers and interpreters, authors, poets and illustrators.”

Contributions for a new Companion to Through the Looking Glass, to be published with Peter Lang (Oxford) in 2022, will be sought after the conference.

Here’s their website and the call for papers. Questions? Email Dr Kohlt.

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The (Red) Queen’s Gambit

The Rev. Ivor Davies (1923-2005), vicar of Hay-on-Wye, had lifelong interests in both chess and the works of Lewis Carroll. His scholarly musings on the subject have been published in journals such as The Anglo-Welsh Review, Jabberwocky, and Theologia Cambrensis. Fortunately, the organization he founded in 1967, the Clergy Correspondence Chess Club, has recently republished his Carrollian chess essays in a booklet entitled The Chess Player’s Alice. Copies (£3.50 = $5) can be obtained by emailing the Rev. Bruce Carlin.

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V&A Online Forum: Creating Wonderlands

Photocall for the performance of wonder.land, 2015.

An all-day online symposium with many speakers, including illustrator Chris Riddell and Dr Kiera Vaclavik, will be held on Friday, April 30 in association with the V&A’s Alice: Curiouser and Curiouser exhibit, opening March 27. It will be 10 am to 5 pm GMT, but as your ticket “includes seven days’ access, you will be able to take the time to absorb it all, with on-demand video recordings of all sessions and additional resources, plus discussion spaces to share your perspective and further your understanding with like-minded learners from across the globe.”

More details, including the program(me) and ticket orders can be found here.

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Online Lecture: Exploring Wonderlands: Alice on Stage and Screen

In this Zoom talk from the V&A, Simon Sladen explores the many adaptations of Carroll’s tale, from 1886’s inaugural stage production to 2020’s Alice in Streamingland created during lockdown. Key films will also be considered as he seeks to analyze the books’ enduring legacy and significant relationship with the performing arts.

Simon Sladen is Senior Curator of Modern and Contemporary Performance at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. He is a member of the curatorial team for the V&A’s Alice: Curiouser and Curiouser and co-edited the accompanying publication.

The talk will be this Thursday, February 18, at 7:30 pm GMT (11:30 am PST, 2:30 pm EST). Click here for more information and to book (free) tickets.

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7 Keys to Delight

The ever inventive Adriana Peliano, a fine artist and founder of the Lewis Carroll Society of Brazil, has authored Alice and the 7 Keys, an enchanting “Pharmacopeia of Creativity” that accompanies readers on a journey, exploring their creativity by means of games, magical elixirs, and her resplendent collages.

You can read more about it on her blog, which also contains a video inspired by it, and undoubtedly will wish to purchase it from Amazon.

A Portuguese version will be out in the near future.

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What the Dickens?

Dr. Edward Guiliano, one of the longtime editors of the Dickens Studies Annual: Essays on Victorian Fiction (DSA), has issued a call for scholarly essays on Through the Looking-Glass in honor of the sesquicentennial in 2022. They will be published in the Spring and Fall issues of DSA.*

The manuscript submission window is from April 2021 to April 2022. Submissions should conform with established DSA guidelines and broad critical approaches. To submit a manuscript, please visit here. Queries to the editors may be addressed here.

In addition, authors of accepted essays on TTLG 150 will be given the opportunity to present their ideas at one of our 2022 semi-annual conferences or monthly Zoom programs. Those who choose to present will receive a $500 honorarium.

* Yes, they are aware that the magazine is semi-annual, despite the title.

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Katia Fiorentino’s Calendar

Katia is a talented artist, born in Italy and currently living in the U.K. Her Alice’s alphabet came out in 2014 as a limited edition of hand-screen-printed sets of illustrations, greeting cards, and a coloring book. Her work has been presented to the Lewis Carroll Society (UK) and exhibited at Alice Day in Oxford and Cambridge. She contributed to the donation of a sizable Carroll collection to the Story Museum in Oxford.

On a visit to California last year she was struck by the realization that the twelve chapters of Looking-Glass would make excellent inspirations for the twelve months of the year, and has crafted a gorgeous calendar for 2021. The images are black-and-white, surreal, dense, and the more you know about Looking-Glass the more you can see in them!

Calendars are £10 plus packing and postage and are available from her by email. At some point later this year the images will become available as single prints and stationery.

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The Mystery of Edwin D.

No, this is not about the famed novel by the “other” 19th-century Charles D., but to announce the biography of Charles L. Dodgson’s youngest brother, Edwin. The illustrious Edward Wakeling, in collaboration with Caroline Luke, granddaughter of their brother Skeffington and co-executor of the C. L. Dodgson estate, has written The Life of Edwin Dodgson: Brother of Lewis Carroll and Missionary to the South Atlantic Islands (Choir Press, 2020). ISBN-13 : 978-1789631470. Support your local bookstore by ordering it through one of them!

It is described thusly:

This is the first biographical account in book form of the Rev. Edwin Heron Dodgson (1846-1918). Sources include the important family archive, from which much new information has been researched and incorporated.

After a short time working for the General Post Office in London, Edwin Dodgson became a missionary with the Society for the Propagation of the Gospels, and after a short spell in Zanzibar, spent much of his time on the remote islands in the Atlantic Ocean, principally Tristan da Cunha. During his time there, tragedy struck the island, wiping out most of the male inhabitants. Edwin, with help from his brother, set about organizing an evacuation of the island, which proved unsuccessful due to the reluctance of some of the remaining islanders.

This book is illustrated with material in the family archive and from the photographic work of Lewis Carroll.

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