Reading with Roosevelt in January: Alice in Wonderland

Dec 22, 2014

What do Theodore Roosevelt, Africa, and Alice in Wonderland all have in common? Read our Reading with Roosevelt selection in January to find out. We will start 2015 by looking at the Lewis Carroll classic, originally published in 1865.

In The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt, Edmund Morris describes the young Roosevelts frolicking in Europe. They formed an organization ambitiously titled the Dresden Literary American Club:

Corinne spelled out their various creative roles: ‘I … keep up the poetry part, Elliott and Johnny the tragical, and Teedie the funny.’ Evidently the last was beginning to fancy himself as a wit: his contributions to the club’s copybooks, which have been preserved, strive mightily to imitate Dickens and Lewis Carroll, but the best that can be said of them is that they are long. (45).

Questions for discussion:

  1. TR encountered Lewis Carroll’s books for the first time as a child, but he remembered them for the rest of his life. How does what you read in your youth impact the way you perceive other pieces of literature?
  2. What do Edith Wharton, Carroll’s poem “The Hunting of the Snark,” and TR have in common?
  3. What are some examples of Carroll’s sense of the absurd that creep into TR’s own writing?

 Discussion will take place on January 19 via FB and Twitter. #ReadwithTR


Posted by Pamela Pierce on Dec 22, 2014 in Current Events  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)  |  Share this post

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