In the Shadow of the Dreamchild  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

In the Shadow of the Dreamchild: A New Understanding of Lewis Carroll is a 1999 book by British author Karoline Leach that posited the concept of the "Carroll Myth": the idea that many of the most famous aspects of Lewis Carroll's biography, including his supposed adoration of Alice Liddell, are more legend than fact.

Its main contentions are:

  • Lewis Carroll was not 'exclusively focused' on female children as has been claimed by all previous biographers
  • He did not 'lose interest' in girls over the age of 14, and that many of his so-called 'child-friends' had actually been grown women
  • Alice Liddell was not 'the real Alice', and that Carroll was never in love with her, or asked to marry her
  • His relationships with adult women have been consistently under-examined and misreported
  • His life was haunted by an unnamed pain that may have involved a guilty love affair

The book has had considerable impact on Carroll studies and reactions to it have been very polarised.

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "In the Shadow of the Dreamchild" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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