martes, 22 de septiembre de 2009

Analisis of Little Red Cap based on Propp's taxonomy

The Grimm Brother were two pioneers in writing fairy tales, and Little Red Cap was not the exception in their Master piece. In the following entry we will make an analisis from a morphological point of view, developed by Vladimir Propp.

Little Red Cap is send to her Grandmother's house by her mother. The girl does not go with her mummy, instead, she goes by herself.

Little Red Cap is said :"Behave yourself on the way, and do not leave the path, or you might fall down and break the glass, and then there will be nothing for your sick grandmother."

The wolf meets her in the way. He offers her to have a look to the flowers there are in the woods."Listen, Little Red Cap, haven't you seen the beautiful flowers that are blossoming in the woods? Why don't you go and take a look? And I don't believe you can hear how beautifully the birds are singing. You are walking along as though you were on your way to school in the village. It is very beautiful in the woods." . She accepted and decide to prepare a bouquette for her grandmother.

The wolf makes the girl a couple of questions about where she is going to,what she is carrying under her apron and where her gendmother's house is, questions that are answered by Little Red Cap innocently.The girl tells him that her Grandmother is sick and weak.

The wolf goes quickly to the Grandmother's house.

The wolf shows himself as someone friendly and kind in order to take advantage of the situation and get information from the girl.

See reconnaissance and trickery.

When the wolf eats the Grandmother, first, and, later, Little Red Cap.

A huntman who was passing by hears the wolf snoring and as the huntman does not know anything about the tragedy, he goes to the Grandmother's house to see if everything is allright.

He takes a pair of scissors and cuts the wolf belly rescuing both, either the grandmother as well as Little Red Cap. After that. they fill the wolf's belly with heavy stones so as to avoid the wolf escapes.

The huntman leaves home with the wolf 's pelt .

Through the snore of the wolf.

It is got by the girl, the Grandmother and the huntman.

The girl and the Grandmother are rescued.

He gets the wolf 's pelt.

The wolf is killed.

In accordance with the characters in this version we will find...
...THE VILLAIN : the wolf
...THE MAGICAL HELPER: a pair of scissors.
...THE PRINCESS : Little Red Cap.
...THE HERO:the huntman.

jueves, 27 de agosto de 2009

viernes, 17 de julio de 2009

Click on The Following Titles and Find your Favourite Fairy Tale

People who contributed to the Analysis of Literature for Children


In 1942, Ireland, a very revolutionary man in terms of education was born. He was conceived under the name of Kieran Egan, someone who gradually could make his own conclusions about how to establish the best condition for learning.

He received educational formation in England, and studied history in 1966 and also got a teaching certificate at the University of London. Then he moved to the United States where he went on studying obtaining a Ph.D. in Philosophy of Education at Cornell University. He published an untold number of works including books and articules not only as an author but also as an editor and co-editor. The most famous are“Teaching as Story Telling: an alternatiive approach to teaching and curriculum in the elementary school”(1989), “Imagination in Teaching and Learning” (1992), “The Educated Mind: How cognitive tools shape our understanding” (1997) and”Teaching literacy:engaging the imagination of new readers and writers” (2006).

This author proposed a new approach for learning giving importance to the historical background every human being has and supporting that our minds have a natural development of understanding which is manifested through a process formed by four stages that built upon each other: mythic(the mythical accounts that helps to comprehend the world thruogh stories) , romantic(when someone discovers the relationship between what was told and his/her own experience), philosofic(when person organizes the knowledge that carries with him/herself taking into consideration a logical model scheme), ironic(has to do with details a person can modify in order to improve certain habits already incorporated).

As from these features he expanded his explanation adding that this cognitive development could not be carried out without the stimulation, use and development of cognitve tools(the characteristics of the mind that makes understandable the world that surrounds us) , specially during the earlier stages; the tools can take form of stories, metaphors, rhyme and rhythm, vivid images and jokes involving two components, imagination and literacy with a mixture of hopes, fears, passions,wonders, fantasy, magic, justice and the appreciation of the good and the evil.

A final point he emphazises has to do with the educational purposes teachers should bear in mind, that underlies his theory as well. They are:-To cover the need of academic education-To create an enviroment in which student could develop their learning as autonomus learners, and -To allow students could develop social interaction.

Maria Tatar is the John L. Loeb Professor of Germanic Languages and Literatures and Chair of the Program in Folklore and Mythology at Harvard University where she teaches literature for children, German culture and folklore.;she studied in Munich and Berlin and wrote several articules for The New York Times, The New Republic and

This intellectual woman based her investigations on the analysis of different versions of traditional fairy tales and related them to a sociocultural perspective which recognises the effects that these tales cause on children.

Supported by the cultural background,she states that the ‘pedagogical purpose’ of fairy tales did not always work out the same. At the beginning, by 1814 with Grimm brothers, for example, the goal had to do more with the passage from childhood to adulthood than with the fact of conveying a moral learning, so that stories were rather violent and bloody that nobody cared of children’s emotional impacts. Many years later, as time went by, new authors critisized this way of storytelling because of the damages they could provoke on a child at a phychological level: what children are told is inherited and internalized and their later reactions might not be the most adequate ones.

Opposed to this point of view, Tatar argues that the natural enchantment, beauty,astonishment and magic of fairy tales derive,exactly, from cruelty,cannibalism, horror and fears the plot creates on the reader’s mind:in the end horror takes revenge and happily-ever-after triumphs; moreover she helds that what no one can deny is the socializing function of tales as a model of helping children to understand how to outlive in a world ruled by adults. The point is that, initially, stories were originated in a culture of adults so that questions of loss, death, punishment, anxiety, desires,love and passion were not a strange matter to include when writing them.

Maria Tatar has written "Spellbound: Studies on Mesmerism and Literature," "Classic Fairy Tales," The Annotated Brothers Grimm and Enchanted Hunters: The Power of Stories in Childhood" (April 2009, W. W. Norton). In this last one she compiles forty new translated stories of the Brother Grimm with 150 pictures

This man was an Austrian Jew who graduated at the University of Viena getting a degree in Philosofy. However, his fervent passion for psychology and Freud’s work about Psychoanalysis made he dedicate himself to several investigation that concluded in a large number of books and articules after emigrating to the United States in 1939 once he was released from a concentration camp during the WWII. He also worked as a professor of psychology at the University of Chicago where he became the Director of the University of Chicago's Sonia Shankman Orthogenic School, a place for treating children that suffered from an emotional disturbance commomly known as autism , in spite of not having an official degree of that branch.

Apart from this contibution, he wrote about the effects of fairy tales on children including Freudian psychology as well, in his master piece “The Uses of Enchantment: The Meaning and Importance of Fairy Tales” (1976). In this book he analised children sexual anxiety and their aspiration of conciousness that at first sight seems to be something beastly -a represive model of socialization- but in fact at a subconciuos level is something beautiful.

Bettelheim also stressed the moralist importace of traditional fairy tales as a symbol that shapes the children psychic development regarding to aspects such as the beginnig “once upon a time...”that helps inserting the child into a fantasy world, the happy endings,odd numbers conveying the idea of fullness, the presence of heroes/heroines and the evils meaning ‘the bads are always punished and the goods always gain recognition’ and the fact of making children to be alert from people they never met before, among others matters.

In contrast,one of the issues he critisizes is the way many authors, Brothers Grimm for instance, introduce stories as a model of socilization. Some of them are expressed with much cruelty and this may affect the child generating psychological conflicts that probably lead to a number of dangers involved in developing conciousness.

Between the stories he took into account to argue his perspective it is worthy mentioning “Rapunzel”, “ The ThreeLittle pigs”, “Cinderella”, “ Little Red Riding Hood”, “Snow White”, “Sleeping Beaty”.

Despite of his great contributions Bruno Bettelheim committed suicide in 1990, accused of having abused and punished his patients apart from inventing academic achievements.