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Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
An Edition Printed in the Unifon Alphabet
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This edition of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland presents the text transcribed into the Unifon alphabet. Unifon was developed as an auxiliary phonetic alphabet designed to facilitate access to literacy to English-speaking children, by presenting to them a writing system that worked by sound. Tests showed that children were able to learn to read rather quickly using this system, and, having made that breakthrough, were able to transition to traditional English orthography relatively easily.
Unifon was developed in the 1950s by Dr John R. Malone, an economist and newspaper equipment consultant who became interested in phonetic writing while consulting with the Bendix Corporation, which was interested in questions of aviation communication. That work was abandoned when the International Air Transport Association selected English as the language of international airline communications in 1957. But Malone's interest in phonetic writing resurfaced when his young son complained about difficulties learning to read. From about 1960 to the 1980s, Margaret S. Ratz used Unifon to teach first-graders at Principia College in Elsah, Illinois. A variety of teaching materials exist using Unifon. From the 1974 to his death in 1993 John M. Culkin, a specialist in media studies, also promoted Unifon.
The transcription used here is based on the Carnegie Mellon University Pronouncing Dictionary, and accordingly reflects American pronunciation-naturally enough, since Unifon was devised by an American.
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