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Showing posts from May, 2011

Guest Blog: The F-Word (No, Not That One!), By Elizabeth Creith

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Editor's Note: The fairy folk, as Elizabeth Creith, guest blogger, ably explains here, are a complicated folk, as likely to help, hurt or ignore humans as do anything else to them. Elizabeth Creith is a writer and editor. You can find her work at Elizabeth Creith's Scriptorium.

Up the airy mountain,
Down the rushy glen,
We daren't go a-hunting
For fear of little men;


from The Fairy Folk By William Allingham

I don't say the f-word. All right, I do – but only in combinations, like fairy tale or fairy godmother. I never use it to refer to the Gentry, the Little People, the Good Folk, the Grey Neighbours, the Others. You know – Them.

They're not the twee little flower-spirits the Victorians imagined, mainly concerned with granting wishes to silly humans. The Folk I know are at best indifferent to us, at worst malevolent, and always dangerous.

Lady Gregory, a friend of the poet Yeats, travelled extensively in Ireland, asking the country people about the Good Folk. What …

Guest Post: 'Snow White and the Philosopher's Stone,' By John Patrick Pazdziora

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Editor's note: At last, our first guest blog post. We already have many more waiting in the wings, but we are especially glad to be starting with John's work. John has had several contest-winning pieces in EC, and is a doctoral candidate at University of St. Andrews, in Scotland. His outstanding blog, The Paradoxes of Mr. Pond is well-worth checking out. Super-scholar that he is, John has provided a list of his cited works, and we've included it at the end of the post. We hope you'll be as challenged and intrigued by this post as we were. Happy reading!

There’s a Jewish saying: "Don’t ask questions of fairy tales." If you’re at all like me, you know that’s pretty hard. Questioning fairy tales is fascinating, certainly for scholars and writers, and for many readers as well.

We like interrogating tales to reveal their subconscious or occluded motives. We like taking them apart and rearranging them, like bits of clockwork on black velvet. We like observing them …

Essential Books About Fairy Tales -- For Grown Ups

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As we all know, many fairy tales were not written primarily for children. Some of them are clearly too violent or racy for kids. Yet the sanitized versions of fairy tales, while still entertaining, leave adults without the full story.

It is certainly true that no one owns fairy tales, so cleaning them up for younger readers is as valid as the more recent versions of fairy tales -- some of which are very adult indeed. (Note to would-be submitters to EC: We are aimed at an age 13 and up audience. All work published here is parent friendly.) Anyway, the original, "real" versions of fairy tales are available, as are a huge variety of excellent books by scholars that are fun to read and enlightening. To find our top favorites, see the "10 Favorite Fairy Tale Books" Amazon slide show at left. A few of the books there are aimed at children, but were chosen for their classic status and lovely illustrations. The Uses of Enchantment,by the ever controversial Bruno Bettelheim…

'Original' Story of 'Snow White' at Our Sister Site

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Ever wonder how the Brothers Grimm told the story of "Snow White? Just click here to read the original version by the Grimms, from 1812.

The image, which has been altered, is by Kay Nielsen.