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Fairy Tales

  • Date Submitted: 02/26/2013 09:19 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 52 
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Once Upon a Time...
...fairy tales weren't written for children
Fairy tales are a subgenre of the folk tale and are generally stories that speak of incredible and fantastic events in often unbelievable situations.
Fairy tale' comes from the French, "contes des fee", as the French literary fairy tales of the 17th century tend to feature more fairies than the tales which are best-known and loved today. This can be partly ascribed to the French writer Charles Perrault[1] who gathered some of the earliest forms of folk tales we now refer to as fairy tales. Perrault put many folktales into the fairy tale form, creating some of the well known fairy tales most of us are familiar with[2]. Perrault wrote his tales to be read at the court at Versailles and each one ended with a moralistic verse.
These tales, however didn't start with Perrault, thought they are generally European in origin. Folk tales have always been told around the fire, traditionally by women from all around the world. Education and the provision of learning for all is still a relatively new concept and in the towns and villages of Europe before the nineteenth century, few people could read or write. Also, the daily tasks of women at the time were pretty boring: spinning wool, sewing, sweeping, cooking, cleaning it is no coincidence that the spinning wheel and the sweeping broom are regular props in fairy tales. Also, the popular phrase of spinning a good tale could originate from these storytelling sessions Giambattista Basile published fifty of these tales in 1634; amongst them can be found the earliest written versions of familiar fairy tales such as Sleeping Beauty'. His writing style is droll and vulgar, but it is interesting to note that the narrators of the tales are old women storytellers of the day, albeit given the spin by Basile that they were old crones and hags. They were the original old wives tales'.
Often fantastical yet gruesome, it has been argued that fairy tales were created by...


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