Thursday, January 23, 2014

The Two-State Solution and Alice-In-Wonderland

Did you know there are several references to the Two-State Solution in Alice in Wonderland?

There's one in Alice's meeting the Gardeners in CHAPTER VIII. The Queen's Croquet-Ground:-

A large rose-tree stood near the entrance of the garden: the roses growing on it were white, but there were three gardeners at it, busily painting them red. Alice thought this a very curious thing, and she went nearer to watch them, and just as she came up to them she heard one of them say, 'Look out now, Five! Don't go splashing paint over me like that!' 'I couldn't help it,' said Five, in a sulky tone; 'Seven jogged my elbow.' On which Seven looked up and said, 'That's right, Five! Always lay the blame on others!' 'YOU'D better not talk!' said Five. 'I heard the Queen say only yesterday you deserved to be beheaded!' 'What for?' said the one who had spoken first. 'That's none of YOUR business, Two!' said Seven. 'Yes, it IS his business!' said Five, 'and I'll tell him--it was for bringing the cook tulip-roots instead of onions.' Seven flung down his brush, and had just begun 'Well, of all the unjust things--' when his eye chanced to fall upon Alice, as she stood watching them, and he checked himself suddenly: the others looked round also, and all of them bowed low. 'Would you tell me,' said Alice, a little timidly, 'why you are painting those roses?' Five and Seven said nothing, but looked at Two. Two began in a low voice, 'Why the fact is, you see, Miss, this here ought to have been a RED rose-tree, and we put a white one in by mistake; and if the Queen was to find it out, we should all have our heads cut off, you know. So you see, Miss, we're doing our best, afore she comes, to--' At this moment Five, who had been anxiously looking across the garden, called out 'The Queen! The Queen!' and the three gardeners instantly threw themselves flat upon their faces. There was a sound of many footsteps, and Alice looked round, eager to see the Queen.

And here:

Alice remained looking thoughtfully at the mushroom for a minute, trying to make out which were the two sides of it; and as it was perfectly round, she found this a very difficult question.

As well as here:

...this curious child was very fond of pretending to be two people. 'But it's no use now,' thought poor Alice, 'to pretend to be two people! Why, there's hardly enough of me left to make ONE respectable person!'
And also this

-"I GAVE HER ONE, THEY GAVE HIM TWO--" why, that must be what he did with the tarts, you know--' 'But, it goes on "THEY ALL RETURNED FROM HIM TO YOU,"' said Alice.
And it is also contained it what the White Rabbit reads:--
They told me you had been to her, And mentioned me to him: She gave me a good character, But said I could not swim. He sent them word I had not gone (We know it to be true): If she should push the matter on, What would become of you? I gave her one, they gave him two, You gave us three or more; They all returned from him to you, Though they were mine before.

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