Saturday, March 30, 2013


Out of all of this weeks readings for the Bluebeard stories, I would have to say that my favorite one would have to be Joseph Jacobs' "Mr. Fox". The first reasoning behind it is just because for some reason it makes me think about the strong friendship between me and my sister. I don't know if I'm looking too far into the story or if the author meant this at all but I don't care because this is what it means to me. In the beginning of the story, it sets the stage of Lady Mary and her soon to be marriage to Mr. Fox, her favorite of her lovers. The last sentence of the opening paragraph says "Lady Mary asked Mr. Fox where they should live, and he described to her his castle, and where it was; but, strange to say, did not ask her, or her brothers to come and see it" (Jacobs). When I read that last part about Mr. Fox not asking her or her brothers to check out his castle, all I could think of was me and my sister looking out for each other, especially when it comes to relationships. I read that last sentence as if Mr. Fox had not yet passed the sibling test. Whenever my sister is in a relationship, I make sure she knows whether or not I like the guy, and she does the same for me. This guys obviously had something to hide, something that he did not want Mary to know, but also her brothers because he knew that her brothers would protect her. Later, when Mary reveals what Mr. Fox did by showing the young girls hand, her brothers jump to her rescue. Likewise, whenever I am in a pickle, my sister is always one of the first people to come to my defense, and vice versa from me to her. We are always looking out for the best for the other one and when I read this story, even thought it wasn't the main focus, it was probably my favorite aspect of it. What I also liked about it was the strong female role. I see Mary as a true feminist. She is not someone who hates men and things women are better than men, but see's herself as an equal and values the differences between men and women. She is independent, brave, and takes initiative, but she also uses her brothers to help her in the end. The women in the other stories do take initiative, but I do not see them as stong as Mary.
I really did not dislike any of the stories but the one that I liked the least would have to be Grimm's "Fitcher's Bird". The main reason is because the wizard who was the antagonist actually just legit stole the women who were to live with him. I feel like the ideas of coercion or deception in the other ones make the other stories have more power. In the other 3 stories, the evil men make themselves appear what they are not and use trickery while in this one the wizard just flat out steals the girls.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Blog 5: Jung and Fairy Tales
When looking at fairy tales, one can see many Jungian ideas about the psyche throughout the stories. For starters, Jung's idea of the "collective unconscious", or archetypes, is somethings that all fairy tales share. We have discussed and seen how certain idea, thoughts, fears, attributes of people, etc. can be seen in fairy tales around the world that are yet still very similar. It is how we get stories like both Little Thumbling and Hansel and Gretel. Both stories expresses these collective unconscious ideas and fears of growing up and not having to rely on parents. The stories also communicate the harsh realities of life and touch upon every child's fear of abandonment. For all children, regardless of social stature, materiel wealth, etc., experience these fears and anxieties because they do not have the knowledge or experience yet to know whether or not they have to actually be afraid or how they have to handle it. Furthermore, especially in Little Thumbling, parts of the Psyche and personality types can be clearly seen. In that story, LT's persona is one of a small dumb child who is just the worthless runt of the family. The only thing is he is just introverted and instead of walking around saying foolish things, he spends his time thinking, observing, and absorbing the things around him. Though the people around him don't understand him and he chooses to stay mostly within himself, he is not entirely who they think he is. Other archetypes and parts of the Psyche can be seen in the story of The Pig King. The pig king is a tale about a prince who was born a grotesque pig. Everyone despised him because of his appearance and because of that he became calloused. He desired a wife so his mother goes out to find him one. She finds a woman with 3 daughters. The eldest marries the prince but he kills her because she does not appreciate him and only consents for the royalties. He kills the 2nd one as well in that marriage for the same reason. However, the 3rd and youngest daughter is sweet and gets to know the king and looks beyond the outer appearance and cares for him. Only then does the prince show that it is only an outer skin, and on the inside he is a handsome prince. This story can reflect Jung's ideas on the archetype of the Hero's Journey, which is about detachment -> transformation -> return transfigured and teach. The pig is detached and separated because of his ugly appearance. However, the love of this girl transforms him by softening his heart. He in the end permanently sheds his outer skin, teaching the listener of the tale that inner beauty is what is important and that judging those from the outside is what is the most important.