Sunday, December 6, 2009


“What do you want to be when you grow up?” the teacher asked her class “Cinderella Cinderella!” almost all the little girls exclaim. This is a normal answer for little girls who are in grade school. I can remember the other little girls and I talking about who we wanted to be. Alot of them loved Cinderella and where always singing songs from the movie while acting out the scenes.

Cinderella has to be one of the world’s most beloved fairy tales. The tale was originally told by Charles Perrault in 1889 contained in the blue fairy tale book under the name The Glass Slipper. There are a few other versions including one by the Grimm brothers and one by Joseph Jacobs however they are all very alike so this story most likely started as an oral tradition passed down through families. However The Perrault story was the version Disney chose to base thier 1950s cartoon.

The Tale starts with an introduction of how Cinderella’s Mother is dying and on her death bed she tells Cinderella to be good and pious. After Cinderella’s mother tells her this she closes her eyes for the last time and dies. This is very similar to the movie, in which Cinderella’s mother dies in the beginning.The story goes on to say that in a year her father had remarried. His new wife was a proud and ruthless woman. She had two beautiful daughters but they had black hearts and were curel. This is very unlike the movie the step sisters were ugly and socially awkward while Cinderella was the pretty one who full of grace. In the Disney movie the father dies unknowingly leaving Cinderella with a mean and jealous stepmother however in the Perrault’s story Cinderella’s father steps aside and lets the step mother abuse his daughter. The step mother in both stories makes Cinderella do numerous servant jobs like cleaning and cooking. She also takes away all of Cinderella’s pretty clothes leaving Cinderella to sleep in the kitchen and only the animals to keep her company.

One day the king announces that he will have a ball for all of the eligible young ladies so his son can choose a wife. The step sister go on to say how they will wear such pretty dresses and have such pretty hair styles, while wearing jewels at their necks, fingers, and wrist all the awhile taunting Cinderella. In both versions Cinderella dresses and does their hair without complaint but desperately wants to go to the ball. In the movie the step mother says that Cinderella can go as long as she finishes her task. Cinderella works hard and with some help from her mice friends she gets it done. Her animal friends also take care of her needing something to wear by sewing her a beautiful pink gown. The step mother sees how pretty Cinderella looks and destroys her dress leaving Cinderella in tears. In the original story Cinderella just follows the step sisters coach until she loses them and she begins to cry. This is where in the movie you begin to hear the fairy godmother sing bibity bobity bo. But in the original there is no such song the fairy godmother just tells Cinderella to go and fetch her a pumpkin out of the garden and bring her mice to turn into a coach and horses. This is very similar to what happened in the movie but the story goes on the have six lizards that are turned into coachmen and a big rat with “the smartest beard” to be the coach master. Then Cinderella comments that all she has is rags to wear and her fairy godmother turns her rags into a beautiful gown with the prettiest glass slippers in the land. In both versions the fairy godmother tells Cinderella not to stay past twelve because the magic is gone at the strike of the clock.

Cinderella arrives at the ball and is admitted as a beautiful princess no one knows. The prince sees her and is immediately smitten and they dance the night away while everyone is saying how beautiful she is. In the movie the step sisters and step mother seem to find Cinderella familiar but in the story Cinderella sat and entertained her sisters without them knowing her. The movie had only one ball but there were two in the story. Cinderella lost her shoe fleeing in from the fist ball in the movie but the story the loosing of the slipper happened at the second ball. As Cinderella is running she escapes past palace guards because they think she is a peasant but she leaves one of her shoes that the prince finds and declares he will find his beloved princess.

The prince goes around in the story to find Cinderella but in the movie the duke is the one that goes house to house. The movies says the while the sisters were getting ready Cinderella started singing a tune from the ball. The sisters realize that Cinderella was the princess and they lock her in a closet. The story says that the prince came and the sister feet cannot fit into the shoe so he offers to try the glass slipper on Cinderella. The step sisters think this is really funny until the shoe slides on her foot like it was made for her and as their mouths were hanging open Cinderella pulls out the other slipper. The step sisters realize that Cinderella was the girl at the ball and throw themselves at her feet and beg for forgiveness. Cinderella brings them up and embraces them while asking them to love her forever like she always wanted. The story ends with Cinderella getting married to the prince and living a happy life. The movie goes on the say that while the sisters are trying on the shoe the mice steal the key from the step mother and open the door to the closet. Cinderella appears at the top of the stairs as the duke is about to leave and asked to try on the slipper. Cinderella’s step mother trips the duke and the glass slipper shatters on the floor. To everyone’s dismay Cinderella laughs and says not to worry and that she has the other slipper. The Duke rejoices and brings her to the prince who marries her and lives happily ever after.

There are other versions of this story that have the stepsisters cutting of their toes and heels so the glass slipper will fit. They also try to ride the coat tails of Cinderella’s good fortune and have their eyes picked out by birds. Other versions have them running for their lives as the fairy godmother turn them into weeping willows. I can see why Disney picked the toned down version of the original story written by Charles Perrault.

Monday, November 30, 2009

The Princess and the Pea

The Princess and the Pea was written in 1835, by Danish writer Hans Christian Andersen. The first time it was published was in a booklet with three other fairy tales. Andersen said that he had heard the story as a child. Though there is no Danish story that matches up to this tale there is a Swedish one. The Swedish version is called The Princess Who Lay on Seven Peas. He could have heard as a child becasue Denmark and Sweden are close geographically.

Among the fairy tales writers Anderson's fairy tales are more light in content than Grimm fairy tales. Unlike The Grimm Fairy tales Anderson’s stories were not reviewed well because they were told in a catchy way and lacked moral lessons. Grimm fairy tales were written mainly for moral lessons and to scare children starite; Andersons stories were meant for more entertainment. He wrote in a voice that was more geared towards the oral traditions that had humor in them rather than be more proper in the literary style of the age. This brings me to think that Anderson is a mix of Disney and Grimm brother’s fairy tales because he did not solely rely on lessons.

The Princess and The Pea beings with a prince who is searching to find his one true love who obviously has to be a princess. However every time he meets a girl she cannot prove she is a princess or live up to his high expectations. The prince begins to think all is lost and that he will never find his love.

One night there was terrible a lighting storm with torrents of rain, and wind that howled in the night. All of a sudden there was a knock on the door,and the old King hobbled to answer it. Standing there in the rain was a girl. The rain had soaked her hair, drenched her dress and dribbled down to her shoes. however this girl clamed she was a true princess but from the looks of her you could not tell. As the old Queen and King shut the door the Queen made up a plan in her head. She wanted to test this vister to see if this girl was really a princess.

While the Prince and King talked to the girl the Queen went to make up a chamber to house the unexpected visitor. While making the bed the Queen placed a pea under the mattress but the Queen still thought that the girl might feel it to easily and laid twenty more mattresses on top of the pea. The Queen still thought the girl might feel the pea through the mattresses to easily and decided to add twenty down blankets.
In the morning the girl was asked how she slept and she replied “I have not slept well at all something was keeping me up all night, making me toss and turn. It felt like there was something under my mattresses, and it was has left me with black and blue bruises.” The Queen at once told the King and Prince of her secret test and they were amazed that this girl had passed. This had proved that she was a princess for who but a princess could feel the pea through so many layers.

The prince promptly took the princess to be his wife. They married and lived full and happy lives. The pea was put in a museum and would be there today however it was sadly stolen and was never seen again.

There are stories that are similar to this one about the girl actually being an orphan and just posing as a princess. The orphan has animal friends that told her what the Queen put under her many mattresses each night because she had to identify them just by sleeping on them. I like both versions. They are lighter than most fairy tales and make me smile rather than make me think.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Analysis Paper

My topic for my blogs and my analysis has been fairy tales now I did not think there was going to be many sources I could use or much of a community to be in touch with but I was wrong. As I was searching through the web I saw a lot of websites that range from strictly historical to more product bases sights there are a lot of fairy tales sights that I could use but the only three digits I visit on a regular basis are Surlalune Fairy tale blog, Diamonds and toad’s blog and Fairy Tale channel.

Surlalune Fairy tale blog has a lot of products that have to do with fairy tales. I like visiting her sight to go look at the story books that are still being written by people. She also showcases fairy tale inspired comics and fairy tale photo shoots for magazines. Her blog is astatically pleasing and has a nice layout she writes in a clear and concise way that is right to the point which I like a lot. I have commented on her blog and have heard feedback from her on my blog which is exciting to know that I have connected with my network of bloggers.

Diamonds and Toad’s blog has more stories than Surlalune’s blog but she also has products. The products that Diamonds and Toad’s have on her website are books, shows and writing contest. Since I have joined the blogger website I have read all of Diamonds Toad’s blogs they and they are very informative. I learned about more historical fairy tales from authors that I had never heard of. I really enjoy reading her blog and I am going to try to use some of her historical stories for my paper.

The Fairy Tale Channel has only stories and about historical fairy tales this is probably my favorite blog because I love the history behind all the stories. She writes about all types of fairy tales and she picks from a lot of the Grimm ones that I am familiar with but I still see ones that I was not aware that they had written about. I love going to her website and seeing the strange and crazy things that people wrote back when there was no explanation for simply explained things. I will pull from this blog the most on my analysis paper.

Fairy tales ended up to be a broader topic than I thought it would be and I am excited to write on them. The sources that I chose are very different but still based on a central topic this will make it easy to pick and choose only the things I need from their post. The three main sources that I choose are going to make writing my analysis paper very simple.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Life Without Happily Ever After

Boys grow up knowing that big boys do not cry and they have to be manly to be needed by a girl. These boys do not grow up in castles and have fairy tale lives. Unlike these stories real adolescent teen boys are subjected to racy talk in locker rooms and have hormones raging through their bodies. These boys grow into men that are not from fairy tales however they are held to these standards. Young girls look at boys through eyes that expect them to sweep in on their white horse and make all their problems go away. We know that this is not fair just like it is not fair for many to want thier woman to be just the right mix of sexually aggressive and a house wife. Sometimes we look at the opposite sex and wonder how much easier it would have been for both of us if we did not expect so much and cannot help but wonder how much “once upon a time” has effected how we think.

What would a life be like without fairy tales? Would it be sad and bleak or less disappointing? Is it possible that woman could learn that men cannot read their minds and not to expect so much from them. Can women stand up and learn to save themselves? Is it possible for men to learn that all women are somewhere between a saint and a sinner? I have often wondered these thoughts and I have come to a conclusion in my head that little girls should be told stories of princesses rescuing the prince along with the other way around. At bed time I want my little girl to ask me to read her the story about the prince in distress that has a dashing princess that comes to the rescue.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Snow White

Snow White
When you think of Snow White do you think of a raven haired girl singing to animals or a naive girl who falls for the same disguise three times? What do you imagine when you think about Prince Charming, was he a dashing prince riding in on his white horse giving out reviving kisses or is he a necrophilia who fell in love with a pretty corpse and wanted to take it to a secret corner of his castle? This fairy tale is particularly my favorite Disney version because it does not sway too much from the original. Snow White was Disney's first animated cartoon in 1937. This was the first color and animated movie in America. The Grimm fairy tale originated in Germany and was heard around many courts in Europe.

Disney’s Snow White is similar to the brothers Grimm in that there are seven dwarfs that live in a little house that Snow White finds when she fled the hunter. Snow White was running from the hunter because the evil queen sent him to kill her but he lets her go in both versions. The prince charming eventually comes to save the day even if it is intentional or not. There is the magic mirror that the evil step mother/witch has that tells her she is the most beautiful in the land until Snow White grows into her looks (she is about sixteen in the Disney movie but only eleven in the Grimm version). In both versions the wicked queen relentlessly tries to kill snow white until it ends up in her dying in one way or another.

The differences are that in the original fairy tale the queen wants the hunter to bring back Snow Whites liver and lungs; in the Disney version the queen wants her heart. The wicked queen in both version finds out snow white is still alive because her mirror tells her she is still not the fairest in the land and she goes after Snow White. In the Grimm version the wicked queen goes after Snow White three different times with the same costume but selling different deadly products. The evil queen is selling dress ribbons, a hair comb, and the famous poisonous apple that has one side red and one side white. This shows that Snow White is probably not very smart to have fallen for the same disguise three times. The famous apple in the Disney movie is fully red and the Grimm version the apple is half white and half red (the white side is poisonous). The Disney Snow White also meet her prince in the begining of the movie but in the Grimm there was no such meeting. Snow White seems to be really stupid in the Grimm version but pure of heart so it seems to save her in the end but the Disney version the only thing that saves her is the prince.

The endings of these stories are very different also. The Disney version has the evil queen come in one disguise and tricks snow white into eating the apple only one time and as the wicked queen is running away from the dwarfs she falls to her death. In the original the wicked queen runs and gets away safely to her castle. The prince is different in the ends both stories. In the original story the prince comes along and sees the seven dwarf’s morning snow white and his eyes come across a beautiful dead girl. I do not know if he fell in love with the dead corpse and wanted to somehow defile it or he just wanted to keep a shrine to snow white but it is rather strange and unsettling compared to the fairy tale ending of the Disney’s life breathing kiss. After the prince comes and kisses air into snow white in the Disney version they go off to live in his castle happily ever after. In the Grimm version the Prince starts to take snow white’s corpse back to his castle as a sudden jolt dislodges the apple from Snow White’s esophagus and she comes back to life. The prince takes her back to his castle and they start to have a wedding celebration. The wicked queen let the curiosity get the best of her when her mirror tells her that the new queen across the land is fair than her. She had to go see if this Queen was fairer than her, imagine her surprise when she saw that the new Queen was Snow White. When she arrives snow white immediately pointed her out to the prince. The prince brought heated metal shoes that the queen was ordered to dance in until she died.

I actually do like the Disney version of this fairy tale because it does not wonder far from the original version. I do realize that corpse love should not be shown to children and with good reason. I think it was quite acceptable for Disney to leave those few parts out of the cartoon.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Fairy Tale Syndrome

Imagine when you were a little girl, did you dress up like a princess from the Disney movies and make your younger siblings play your subjects? When you were little did your father call you his little princess and give you everything you want. This could lead to a syndrome called fairytale syndrome. Fairy Tale Syndrome also called Cinderella Syndrome is when a little girl thinks that she will grow up and things will either be like a fairy tale or her love life will be perfect. For those of you who have girls do you tell them that they are princesses, or do you say how they will stay at home and not have to do anything in their white picket fenced house while their perfect man will go to work and support them? This might be giving you child what psychiatrist call Cinderella Syndrome. A writer describes this syndrome as “girls dreamed of being swept away by a strong Prince Charming, who saves their lives, loves them unconditionally, and gives them everything they want; and, our boys expect to become mesmerized by a beautiful, sweet, loving Princess, to whom they willingly would give the world on a silver platter. Both believe they will be saved from a wicked stepparent, or abusive parents, then go on to live happily ever after. In their world of make believe, life is sweet smelling roses void of thorns.” (Cinderella Syndrome—Quesinberry, Bonita par. 1) The children start to think that all stepparents are bad. This syndrome is damaging to both families and children. Now unlike I used to think the Grimm fairy tales also cause this disorder along with Disney. The fairy tales tell of how the rich are always beautiful and usually get their way. This could make a child strive for money only and think that is all there is to life. The other part says that poor but clever and good people get a chance to make their way through magical test and find their true desires. This teaches children the wrong morals and makes things very confussing when they are introduced into the real world.

The New york times had an article in 1981 says that woman maybe just be secretly scared of independence. I think that this is something that was branded into the brains of woman for decades and now we are coming out of being held down by conformity to our parent’s standards. I think this is a very good thing. Many women today have careers, pay their own bills, and live alone. Modren woman have more choices than woman generations ago and does not want to make thier own way in the world. I do understand that raising a family is a full time responsibilty and in now way do I think that that is not being a modren woman. A woman that builds a sucessful home and is a role model for thier children on how to live. This is very ideal for children and probly prevents this syndrome as long as the parents is being honest about the real world. I know that not every little girl or boy grows up to think this but it is a scary possibility that we might be twisting our children’s brains by telling them bedtime stories.

Quesinberry, Bonita. “Cinderella Syndrome” 2007, Nov 8 2009,

Unknown. “''The Cinderella Complex: Women's Hidden Fear of Independence'' 1981, Nov 8 2009,

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Grimm vs Disney

Grimm fairy tales are better than the Mass produced children’s fairy tales. The men who wrote the Grimm fairy tales were English geniuses. They took tales that were only spread by mouth through generations and put them on paper. Disney has taken little girls fantasies and twisted the generations of stories to watered down versions that were not even intended for children or happy thoughts. There are many people who do not even know the original stories. These stories are our history and I think should be put into the educational system for people to learn about their ancestors. The Disney and main stream fiary tales give children (mostly little girls) somthing called Fiary Tale Syndrome. Fairy Tale Syndrome is when a child thinks that things will end up just like they are in the movies. Imagine believing that one day if you are clever enough and good enough a prince (or just a man) would come sweep you off your feet and love you forever. This syndrome can grow with a child so when he or she gets big enough she thinks everything will come easily. In their adult lives if something gets hard in a relationship they leave because obviously he was not their prince or princess. Now I understand that most children do not grow up to believe that they are going to find someone perfect or be perfect but it does put false hope in a child when the best way to talk to children is to be honest with them. I can understand why Disney does make these movies and books for children it is not a crime to let a little girl be happy for a few minuets before bedtime but I think it is wrong to insist that everything will be ok to a child growing up in a really difficult world. The original fairy tales are less distorted and watered down and make a great read for many people not like the Disney ones that only appeal to children.