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An Introduction To Fairy Tales.

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Presentation on theme: "An Introduction To Fairy Tales."— Presentation transcript:

1 An Introduction To Fairy Tales

2 When did people start telling fairy tales?
Fairy tales have been around for over a thousand years. Fairy tales have been recorded since 890 AD, but fairy tales were mostly only spoken stories until the 1600’s

3 Where did fairy tales come from?
Fairy tales come from all over the world, with many different cultures adding their unique twist to the fairy tale genre.





8 Why did people tell fairy tales?
Believe it or not, fairy tales weren’t created to put children to sleep. In fact, many fairy tales were too gruesome or violent for young children to hear.

9 For example, the original version of Snow White

10 Or the original version of Rumpelstiltskin
He claimed the devil told the queen his name and then stomped his foot so hard in the ground that he tore himself in two trying to get it out.

11 Fairy tales told by men were usually shared in a pub, in a tavern, or around a camp fire

12 They would tell them to complain about their wives or their controlling mothers

13 Or complain about the government

14 Or fulfill some fantasy

15 Women, on the other hand, told their stories around the sewing circle or around the kitchen

16 They told their fairy tales to pass the time while working

17 Or to warn against evil

18 Or, of course, to fulfill a fantasy

19 OK, so how did fairy tales become to be considered children’s stories
Charles Perrault, who wrote in the late 1600’s, had a big hand in this development. He was also one of the first writers to tell fairy tales that were intended for children. He was also the first prominent writer to publish a book of fairy tales.

20 You might recognize some of his fairy tales


22 The Brothers Grimm 150 years after Perrault, these brothers played a huge role in furthering the popularity of fairy tales. While some of the tales were quite violent, people of all ages were enchanted by their collection of fairy tales. Their collection contained hundreds of German fairy tales.

23 Some of the more famous Grimm fairy tales included . . .


25 One other major writer for this genre is Hans Christian Anderson

26 Of course, as you can judge from these pictures, Disney has also played a major role in making fairy tales accessible to children

27 What makes a story a fairy tale?
Not just any story with witches, fairies, princesses, or magic is a fairy tale. Fairy tales must contain certain characteristics to be considered a true fairy tale. There are approximately 15 fairy tale characteristics, and a story must have 8-10 of them to be considered a fairy tale.

28 1 – Fairy tales usually begin with phrases like “Once upon a time” or “A long, long time ago.”
2 – They usually take place in castle or forest. 3 – There’s usually an obviously good character. 4 – And, there’s usually an obviously evil character.

29 5 – The hero or heroine has bad luck or is badly mistreated.
6 – The hero or heroine must battle a villain. 7 – Many of the characters are animals or members of royalty.

30 8 – Hero or heroine must perform impossible tasks.
9 – There are elements of magic in the story. 10 – The hero or heroine has a helper, usually a magic helper

31 11 – The numbers three or seven are often found in the story.

32 12 -- The good character wins, or outsmarts the bad character.
13. Bad characters are usually punished. 14. Story provides a warning or moral to reader. 15. The ending is usually "happily ever after."

33 OK, so you’ve learned WHAT makes up a fairy tale
OK, so you’ve learned WHAT makes up a fairy tale. Now the question is – WHY do fairy tales include these characteristics?

34 Why are they called “fairy tales?”
Most fairy tales do not include any mention of a fairy, but many of the early popular French fairy tales did. French women who shared their stories in the salons began labeling their stories with the “fairy tale” tag, and the label stuck even in other countries.

35 Why do fairy tales always have magic?
One reason, of course, is that magic is just plain fun and entertaining. But the main reason magic was used was because it was the only way for people to fulfill their fantasies. Back then, there were very few educational opportunities for the lower classes, and, therefore, almost no way to improve your status. If you were born poor, you stayed poor.

36 So, if you wanted to become a king, be carried off by a prince or simply live a life of luxury then you had better find a genie, a fairy godmother, or some magic beans! . .

37 Why does there always seem to be a wicked witch or a wicked stepmother?

38 Men love to bad-mouth their wives, mothers, and mother-in-laws when they get together in a bar. What better way to take out your aggression than making the troublesome female of your life the wicked witch of your story. You had a better chance of not having to pay for it later, too.

39 Why do the stories always take place “a long, long time ago” or in “a kingdom far, far away?”

40 Because their stories are filled with magic and are completely improbable, the story writers need a setting where readers can view the events of the story as possible. Who’s to say that there isn’t magic in a far away kingdom no one has ever been to?

41 Why do animals talk?

42 Once again, talking animals are more entertaining than regular people, but there is a more important reason for using talking animals.

43 Many fairy tales involve plots that include members of royalty being tricked, outsmarted, or overthrown. These types of stories greatly displeased members of royalty, and some stories were considered treasonous. One way to get around this trouble was to have an animal play the character that tricks or outsmarts the king.

44 And finally, what’s with the numbers 3 and 7?

45 This fairy tale characteristic actually originates from the Bible
In the Bible, the numbers 3 and 7 are holy numbers. They are numbers of completion and perfection. Many fairy tale writers wrote stories where the hero had to complete three tasks before he was successful. Or, they chose to have three or seven major characters or character helpers to symbolize the goodness of their characters. Eventually, writers included these numbers to solidify their story as a fairy tale.

46 Any questions?

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