Grimm's Fairy Tales

The Evolving Concept of Home: An Analysis of Visual Imagery as Related to the Psychological Themes of “Growing Up” in the Grimms’ Hansel and Gretel

As a child coming of age in the mass-consumerist, technologically innovative, and media-influenced climate of the twentieth century, one’s exposure to fairy tales will have likely been informed by recurrent viewings of Disney film adaptations. Reared on such a diet of animated full-length features, as well as the lucrative merchandising campaigns accompanying each new release, the modern-day child’s concept of the fairy story is strongly linked with catchy musical numbers, comic foils in the form of smart-alecky critters, heroic princes mounted atop white horses, and the healing power of the phrase, “happily ever after.” However as Jack Zipes has observed, as the great villain of the fairy tale tradition, Disney in fact “violated the literary genre of the fairy tale,” effacing its most gripping qualities for the need to create marketable, easily accessible cinematic versions. A powerhouse of visual imagery, compelling stories, poignant metaphor and universal human themes, fairy tales are more than simply charming narratives of magical donors, anthropomorphized objects and true love fulfilled. Able to excite the imagination, harness a child’s fascination with the power of magic and wishes, fairy stories are in fact the literary...

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