Reading the latest news on fairy tale land, a.k.a list of books that are banned for one reason or the other. I am amazed how fast grownups judge children’s books by one event in their life.
Here are few reasons why those children’s books were removed:
…It allegedly undermines religious beliefs
Fairy tails always undermine the religious beliefs! Because they are about moral norms! They adapt through time and culture and this is what makes them so good to teach morals. They are suppose to make you think if you would take the same action as the hero or heroin did. Every book out there that isn’t Bible will undermine Christian beliefs, because it gives you new perspective. Same goes for Quran or Hindu’ holy text or on any other holy text out there. That’s what’s suppose to show you “how bad the rest of the world is and how good it is that you chose to follow your path” or “wow! Amazing what the writer has come up with! How different point of view!”. I just find it offensive how people try to get books banned on bases of religion.
…Due to its excessive violence, negative portrayals of female characters, and anti-Semitic references
From this I see that people are not aware of the interesting side of the fairy tales – most of them take place few centuries back. Though I do like the modern stories just as well. That negative portrayals of female characters is one of my favorites here. After reading interesting book called “Moulding the Female Body in Victorian Fairy Tales and Sensation Novels” (I suggest it if you find it in the library or don’t mind the salty price), I realized that it was the uneasy feeling the tails give you that play the main role, not the offensiveness itself. For example the original Beauty and the Beast story, there is one line that makes me freak every time I read it: “I shall go willingly and will be happy, because I can show through this how much I love you, father.” This meant I really disliked the character until I realized that if in 1740s, when the story came out, it probably sounded sincere and thus had a meaning that nowadays acts like a warning – you don’t want to be her if she acts like that. It’s foolish. Times were like they were when Andersen wrote his stories and he expressed the truth. The way things were – chilling and uninviting. To rise it to our standards today and start yelling something on feminism is so wrong it just IS wrong. Take it as a reality check – if you recognize through these yourself, it’s time to act and rid yourself from the problem or suffer like they did. I took Andersen’s fairy tales up each time I wanted to cry.
…It teaches children that it is acceptable to kill witches and paints witches as child-eating monsters
Hansel and Gretel. Long story short- ummm…. Nobody is bothered that the witch was a cannibal? But it bothers that it teaches your child that if you are in rough, then do something about it? I do agree with depicting witches wrong, but come on – there has to be a bad force in the story or there is no story!
…Due to themes of witchcraft, wizardry, cults, Satanism, death, hate and dark content
Harry Potter! I have only one thing to say. It.Is.A.Story.
…It was “pornographic” and contained “satanic pictures.”
I thought long and hard where in Little Mermaid is this satanic picture it refers to? Pornographic? Only to those, who don’t dare to see themselves in the mirror. But satanic? She turns into angel in the end and she stays truthful to what she loves. Am I missing something here?
…The book was violent because of the actions of the wolf … The teacher questioned the appropriateness of the little girl taking wine to her grandmother and her grandmother later drinking the wine.
With Little Red Riding Hood… Everybody is concerned that the big bad wolf eats the people, but nobody cries out to the wolf: “Don’t talk to that girl! They’ll cut you up, fill you with stones and toss you in the well!” I don’t know which was worse – that he ate them or what they did to him after it.
I’m not even adressing the second part of this allegation as I just don’t see the point. If every book out there would be banned where children carry alcohol for one reason or the other, we would have very tiny book shelves. In Tom Soyer they even got drunk!
At some point it was very popular to give the fairy tales some life based meaning. So it was that Red Riding Hood was suppose to be a story told by women to their daughters, who just hit puberty, to warn them of horrors what will follow if they talk to strangers.
Oh I know how to ruin fairy tales for grownups so bad they think twice before telling the story again. Yet I adore them each time more after I’ve read another scientist’ research on what they could mean. A whole new world grows out, I can say that much, a whole new perspective.
Even more I urge you read every one of those books and fairy tales that are “banned” because somebody found them offensive. Learn what they are and why they are written the way they were and find out why they were banned. It’s worthless word.