Sunday, September 9, 2012

What is a Fairy Tale?

What is a fairy tale might you ask?  Well, one might say that a fairy tale is just a story about a princess and magical beings with a happy ending.  However…  A fairy tale is much more than that. 
            The original fairy tale was around for centuries before actually earning the name fairy tale.  Fairy tales back in that time period were not in books, nor were they well known movies like they are today.  Family members usually passed them down from generation to generation allowing them to grow and to change as the time period suggested.  They usually do involve magical creatures such as giants, dwarfs, monsters, royals, and/or treasures too.  Some even with a happy ending.  But the content depends on the origin of the tale.  Fairy tales usually portray a perfect and eternal world that cannot be destroyed.  When a villain threatens that world usually a heroic figure either introduced earlier in the story or after the event occurs comes to “save the day.”  In well-known fairy tales such as Sleeping Beauty and Snow White the princesses fall into a deep sleep.  This deep sleep represents more than a spell or a curse though.  It actually represents the time in which a girl goes through puberty and becomes a woman.  Fairy tales also don’t always have true love or happy endings either.  In some of the original versions of Sleeping Beauty (a.k.a. Brier Rose) the princess is waken not by a prince, but by her new born twins sucking on her finger.  The king in this story only shows up and impregnates her while she is in her deep slumber.  And in one of the original version of Cinderella, Cinderella kills her stepmother so her father can marry the woman of her choice.
So a fairy tale is not just about magical creatures, happy endings, and finding true love.  A fairy tale is a story about the struggles of the main character, and the overcoming of a tough event or point in their life.  Every part of the fairy tale has a deeper meaning.  You just have to know what to look for and how to interpret it.