How did people react to Lewis Carroll's books about Alice in Wonderland? How were they influential?

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thanatassa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Lewis Carroll’s books about Alice--including Alice in Wonderland--written for Alice Liddell, the daughter of the eminent classical philologist, were immensely successful, and can be said to have founded the genre of modern children’s literature. Although immensely erudite, unlike earlier works for children, these were unusual for their period for works aimed at children in being intended primarily as entertainment rather than as moral lessons. Carroll’s combination of a normal realistic young child and a surreal and whimsical environment has become a staple of children’s literature and certain genres of adult fantasy ever since Carroll’s pioneering work. The Alice books have remained in print continuously, been translated into many languages, and made into films. They continue to be enjoyed by adults as well as children and are not only read widely but included in academic curricula and discussed frequently in literary scholarship.