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Obverse & Reverse Ch6 Page 24

Obverse & Reverse Ch6 Page 24 published on 45 Comments on Obverse & Reverse Ch6 Page 24

Not everyone has the ability or desire to leave their home, even when that home has some undesirable qualities.

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Yeah, I knew it. This universe’s Lewis Carroll was a wanker.

It seems to me like he was parroting actual beliefs of Wonderlanders as described by them to him, so perhaps more ‘didn’t examine what he was told’ than anything else. I mean, who’s to say he even met a bandersnatch? That’s still not great, but more negligence than malice.

Did Roald get his name because he’s also an arsehole who vents his misanthropy via children’s literature?

In this page he tells that the main reason he want to “shun the frumious bandersnatch” is not actually the poem, but the fact that since he is still living in wonderland, he and his family would suffer from the rest of the population if he did not.
an understandable lack of bravery, rather than misanthropy or cruelty

I heard that it’s hard to leave the Amish because they have to shun the person who left. No eating together with the parents that raised ~~you~~ person.

It’s also difficult for the more strict Amish to leave as their formal education legally ends in 8th grade.

It’s hard for them to function in modern cities, as they’re behind in all levels of education, and have limited exposure to technologies.

So their support net goes ‘poof’ if they try to leave…

So they usually need someone on the outside help them.

It’s also common in Fundamentalist Mormon communities. It lets people like Warren Jeffs flourish, to boot.

I’ll admit I’m out of the loop on Roald Dahl outside of the books themselves. I read a number of them as a child and really liked them. Danny, The Champion of the World was one of my favorites. What made him an “arsehole”?

Roald Dahl was a miserable bugger who didn’t get on well with people, especially kids. Torturing characters in Charlie And The Chocolate Factory and other books was a catharsis for him. If you watch the stop-motion Fantastic Mr Fox movie, one of the farmers is deliberately modelled on Dahl himself.

I can feel his loathing of children who are children, not miniature adults, and could when I was a child reading his books.
On the other hand he was an incredibly loving father.
And, apparently, he liked to sneak adult jokes into his stories.

For instance, “Snozzberries” — as in, “the snozzberries taste like snozzberries.”

Snozzberries, as he establishes in a later work, are dicks.

You’re on freakin’ thin ice there, Roald, quoting that one. I presume you recall the previous line?

No? Let me remind you.

“Beware the jub-jub bird”

Or it might be exactly because of that. He and his son have a difficult time enough, he doesn’t want to compound it further

I think that’s a bit off.

Denying Eleanor the chance for acceptance that he and Rupert are trying to get? Bad form.

It’s worse than bad form: It will give a real reason for Eleanor to be a monster and a potential future problem. Why bother trying to be something else when doing so will get you ostracized? Why bother considering kindness rather than anger when kindness was denied to her?

I know that this storyline mentions that Lewis Carroll accidentally stumbling into the Wonderland avalon was the source of inspiration for his writing, but I wonder how that led to his poem Jabberwocky being so frequently cited among Wonderlanders as the “scriptural” explanation for their prejudices. Did Carroll just write down the “beware the jubjub bird and shun the frumious bandersnatch” that he already saw happening when he visited, and then the fame of his work kind of enforced it?
If so, the question of which came first, the crappy treatment of certain Wonderlanders or Lewis Carroll’s work, kinda goes to show how absurd prejudice can be.

Fascinated by the mug tree on the wall behind them in the first panel.

I for one am glad that the future includes those two wonderland kids grown up and still friends, it bodes well. Roald is acting like a monster. The kids need to be pulled out of this Avalon and into one that’s less prejudiced.

It’s not hard to figure out exactly which manner of real-world prejudice this is a parallel of.

Not necessarily; it can cover several. It doesn’t have to be a specific Outsider. Just an Outsider who is obviously so, by appearance, by dress, by behavior…

The “Not One Of Us” syndrome.

That’s not really what I meant. They’ve taken it as ‘gospel’ because an old book said so.

It still could be several. The Bible does not have a monopoly on prejudices. It is not the only book whose word is taken as undisputable gospel, even books that weren’t meant to be taken as such. And it’s not hard to imagine that there are parallels with any number a small, closed-up, isolationist community that has turned a prejudice into a tradition.

And it doesn’t even have to be a book.

Before there were books, there were Oral Traditions.

It’s one thing to have it written down and as an occasional reference and for someone to point to.

It’s another thing to have it repeated time and again to commit the tradition to memory for everyone in a community.

I’ve got two questions.

1) Did you rename Roald sometime over the years? I was just re-reading the “Exchanges” chapters the other day, and noticed that Jim referred to an ‘Uncle Antoine’ when teasing Rupert for sucking at Borogove.

2) What did Roald mean by that he (and Rupert) “has” to keep living in Wonderland? Is it not an option for him to leave Wonderland?


Pretty sure Antoine is his middle name. Or maybe Roald is and it’s accepted in either order, like my real name is. His vocation is studying the direct real-time effects the surplus of magic has on the Wonderland environment, why is why he ‘can’t leave’.

“They breathe fire, Mary!”
Careful there, Roald, I have a hunch that your sister’s about to duplicate that feat.

I have to say, though, I am wondering why she’d merrily take Jim and Lorne along to Wonderland if she’s so wary of what/how they teach/handle children there. Does she know how much Jim’s opinions, as shown a couple pages ago, already mirror(ed?) the Wonderland culture?

Probably because Wonderland has the same prejudice that Avalons have elsewhere. Wonderland isn’t the only place where we see prejudice against monsters. We see it displayed elsewhere, Wonderland is just slightly worse due to its isolation. Whereas the other Avalons have to live among humans, often in more cosmopolitan settings, those are much more mellowed out.

Most likely she’s just hoping that her upbringing will have Jim knowing better. Which may not be too untrue, because Jim is only being prejudiced when it suits him and he got over it fairly quickly.

Was mentioned how the people of Wonderlands are considerated weirdos for others, and based on that many would assume they would be more open to stuff, but indeed, in reality many of the “weird communities” tend to be just even more reluctant to acept anything out of their own niche, even “normal stuff”, and even less anything weirder than that that is outside their own niche.

“Listen Mary! Upholding prejudice at the behest of societal pressure is paramount! We’re English, Mary! This is our whole Thing!”

(Honestly a lot of fun theming around “things not being as they appear” here between wonderland appearing to be a freer, funner place that’s actually just as restricted by daily mundanities like surprisingly arbitrary or archaic prejudice. But then a double theme combo, it is the Adults with their preconceptions of “it’s complicated and sometimes you gotta uphold norms even if it contradicts your morals and the evidence before you” that learn things aren’t what they thought and you don’t in fact have to do that. A nice little inversion of the “children go on a journey, fail to heed a parents warning, and learn a lesson about the real world” fable)

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