Alice's Adventures in Cambridge (R.C. Evart) - History Press/Harvard Lampoon - 2008 (94 pages)

This is a reprint of the 1913 parody of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll with a new foreword by the Harvard Lampoon of 2008.  Although a classic parody, it is really dated and very much focused on the Harvard experience of 1913.  Alice (not from Radcliffe) is apparently an unauthorized coed wandering the Harvard campus.  She first encounters the Frog Professor who grades papers with his eyes closed.  The White Rabbit received an "A" for a blank paper.  She then meets the "Keezer Cat" who wants her to jump out of her skin and "Humpty Dumpty of Manter Hall" who explains the "Jabberwocky" poem.  She later meets the Hatter, March Hare and Dormouse who claim to be the "Student Council" who are "known for doing nothing."  After brief meetings with the Black Knight, the Channing Mouse and Tweedle & Twaddle, Alice joins the Queen's Croquet Party and gets put on probation by the queen because of red tape.  She finally meets the White Knight on rocking horse named "Reform of the Elective System" (who would have guessed that?).  The White Knight recites a very long anti-Yale poem and then shows her the "arched gateway and the whole world is before you."

The book is a quick read with 21 excellent illustrations by E.L. Baron.  I appreciate the original effort and the trip through time.  However, as hilarious as this may have been 96 years ago, I could not find a single passage that made me laugh out loud.  I continue to believe that parody as it is now known began after WWII.  [JAM 8/6/2009]