I'd only read this book before as a child, and a much much abridged version. Reading it now, in the context of this course was enriching. I found the book full of metaphors about, well, everything! I would describe the style of writing as something between confusing, but leaning towards intriguing.
I saw the character of Alice grow during the course of the book; wiser and smarter. Alice starts off as being the stereotypical believer, and it was thought provoking to see her react with intrigue rather than shock when so many unusual things were happening all around her. The whole baggatelle with her height and the key were representative of the way we sometimes try to get things in order but fail. We cry, there's a metaphorical pool of tears, and then friends and people around us help us get by.
The dodo holding the stick was an intriguing paradox; I thought of the dodo as a stupid bird, but the illustration of it holding a stick seemed to present it as wiser. At the same time, it could be a reference to how smart people around us are sometimes considered stupid, or vice versa, I'm not sure.The fact that she knew what a hookah was is also interesting, maybe about how we sometimes conjure information out of our subconcious to make sense of things. Father Williamson's tale was one about taking lessons from everything, which although not elaborated upon, is what Alice does throughout.The instance with the Cheshire cat is all about fear and respect of the unknown.
The number 3 came up as expected; 3 sisters at the bottom of the well and the 3 gardners (although I expected the numbers of the 3 gardners to make some obvious sense).
Lastly, the bit about uglification and the suppression of applause were very very smart. An enriching experience indeed!(Alice's) Adventures in Wonderland