后 来偶尔读到一点评述本书的文章，才知道，本书和它的续集《爱丽丝镜中奇遇》（Through the Looking-Glass）不仅在英国儿童文学史上地位卓著，而且在英国文学史上也是稳稳当当占一席，甚至于对英语本身都有贡献。本书被誉为“荒诞文学”的开山之作，更是“literary nonsense” 的最佳代表作之一。（之所以这么说，当然是因为书中众多的或原创或改编的诗歌/童谣。）
虽 然我至今为之没搞清楚到底什么是literary nonsense，但是就从查到的一点点资料看，这种文体在英语当中非常重要。它是英语世界早期民间文学（传说、诗歌、童谣等）和宗教政治讽喻文学的一种结合体。据说这种问题很搞笑--能看出来这一点大概需要比较好的英语水平才行。最关键的是：The effect of nonsense is often caused by an excess of meaning, rather than a lack of it.
从这一点出发来看，书中那些乍看之下不着四六的情节，其实都有影射的意思再其中。比如那端渡渡鸟带头的围成圈赛跑的情节就是讽刺英国的议会制度；黑桃园丁用红油漆漆白玫瑰则是影射英国历时百年的红白玫瑰之战；而红桃王后冲爱丽丝喊“砍掉她的头”则是沙翁笔下理查三世对黑斯廷斯勋爵大喊“砍掉他的头”的桥段，等等、等等。书中的人物，有一些是引用了英国知名童谣或儿童诗歌中的人物（例如续集中的叮当兄弟Tweedledee ＆ Tweedledum和矮胖子Humpty Dumpty），还有一些是借用了当时的谚语、俗语（例如帽匠The Hatter、三月兔The March Hare、柴郡猫The Cheshire Cat）等。要看出这些不仅需要英语好，还得了解当时英国社会的宗教、历史、文化背景。真是需要好大学问呢！
在这两本看似简单的儿童故事里，作者将许多数学、逻辑学的概念融入其中。相关内容太精彩了，现将一些与前集相关的列在此处，大家自己看吧： * In chapter 1, "Down the Rabbit-Hole", in the midst of shrinking, Alice waxes philosophic concerning what final size she will end up as, perhaps "going out altogether, like a candle."; this pondering reflects the concept of a limit. * In chapter 2, "The Pool of Tears", Alice tries to perform multiplication but produces some odd results: "Let me see: four times five is twelve, and four times six is thirteen, and four times seven is—oh dear! I shall never get to twenty at that rate!" This explores the representation of numbers using different bases and positional numeral systems (4 x 5 = 12 in base 18 notation; 4 x 6 = 13 in base 21 notation. 4 x 7 could be 14 in base 24 notation, following the sequence). * In chapter 5, "Advice from a Caterpillar", the Pigeon asserts that little girls are some kind of serpent, for both little girls and serpents eat eggs. This general concept of abstraction occurs widely in many fields of science; an example in mathematics of employing this reasoning would be in the substitution of variables. * In chapter 7, "A Mad Tea-Party", the March Hare, the Mad Hatter, and the Dormouse give several examples in which the semantic value of a sentence A is not the same value of the converse of A (for example, "Why, you might just as well say that 'I see what I eat' is the same thing as 'I eat what I see'!"); in logic and mathematics, this is discussing an inverse relationship. * Also in chapter 7, Alice ponders what it means when the changing of seats around the circular table places them back at the beginning. This is an observation of addition on a ring of the integers modulo N. * The Cheshire cat fades until it disappears entirely, leaving only its wide grin, suspended in the air, leading Alice to marvel and note that she has seen a cat without a grin, but never a grin without a cat. Deep abstraction of concepts (non-Euclidean geometry, abstract algebra, the beginnings of mathematical logic...) was taking over mathematics at the time Dodgson was writing. Dodgson's delineation of the relationship between cat and grin can be taken to represent the very concept of mathematics and number itself. For example, instead of considering two or three apples, one may easily consider the concept of 'apple,' upon which the concepts of 'two' and 'three' may seem to depend. However, a far more sophisticated jump is to consider the concepts of 'two' and 'three' by themselves, just like a grin, originally seemingly dependent on the cat, separated conceptually from its physical object.