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Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass

by Lewis Carroll

Analysis: Narrator Point of View

Who is the narrator, can she or he read minds, and, more importantly, can we trust her or him?

Third Person (Limited Omniscient)

The narrator of the Alice books hovers at a distance from the action of the story, a disembodied figure who sees all. However, there are limitations on this impersonal storytelling voice. The narrative is focused entirely on Alice; she's never offstage, so we don't see any action that she doesn't know about. We're also privy to her thoughts, which the narrator can probe and examine. But make no mistake – we're not getting the story from her perspective. We are told how she feels about things, but we, like the narrator, keep at arm's length from her, watching what happens instead of experiencing it with her. This adds to the feeling that Alice is a two-dimensional character; even though we're interested in her adventures, we're not really invested in her personally.

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