Comments on: Book of the Week: Charles Perrault’s Fairy Tales http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/ The Intersection of Design & Motherhood Tue, 25 Nov 2014 12:39:39 +0000 hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.5.1 By: Becky http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-289709 Becky Fri, 12 Aug 2011 14:16:42 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-289709 One lovely online resource for fairy tales and their history is the Sur La Lune website,

http://www.surlalunefairytales.com

which includes fascinating annotated versions of the tales. I grew up with a shelf full of the Andrew Lang “color” fairy books from Dover, and read those to my kids,

http://www.mythfolklore.net/andrewlang

so the Disney versions were quite a revelation to them…

When my eldest (14 next week) started home schooling for first grade, we began the adventure with a picture book study of Cinderella around the world, which was great fun.

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By: Vicki http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-289446 Vicki Thu, 11 Aug 2011 20:17:59 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-289446 I teach a really amazing arts-in-education program called Neighborhood Bridges (http://www.childrenstheatre.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=378&Itemid=440). We use classic stories to inspire dialogue, creative writing, and creative drama with school children.

It is incredible to see the kids respond to the “Real” fairy tales that haven’t been Disney-ified. I have learned so much myself. I love talking with the teachers I work with about the stories – we have great conversations about them too!

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By: Brooke Williams http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-289050 Brooke Williams Thu, 11 Aug 2011 03:22:04 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-289050 I recently enjoyed Adam Gidwitz’s _A Tale Dark and Grimm_, a fun and gruesome read. Depending on the child, I would recommend it for ages 9 and up. My 10-year-old loved it. Here is a brief review I wrote: “Reading the back of the book jacket will give you some idea of what this book is like. But it is also more than that. It is dark and bloody and humorous and self-conscious and completely unbelievable. But there is something wonderful and true about it as well. One of the reasons I like this book is because of its uniqueness. It pushes and tests the boundaries of genre and of what makes a children’s book. By the end (the REAL end), I am seeing the characters as more than flat individuals ruled by crazy fates, which is how I usually see fairy tale characters. I also like something I read in the author’s acknowledgments, which says ‘to trust that children can handle it.’ Now, this all depends on the individual child, but I sometimes think we protect our children from too much when it comes to literature.”

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By: Amanda http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-288980 Amanda Wed, 10 Aug 2011 05:40:45 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-288980 Something interesting about Perrault’s Cinderella – the oldest European version of Cinderella is actually an Italian tale dating from 1634. However, a similar Cinderella tale was found to have originated with the T’ang dynasty in China (618-907 AD). So, the Cinderella tale appears to have migrated from Asia to Europe at some point.

The Chinese version of Cinderella is called ‘Yeh-Shen.’ A friend of mine gave me a copy for my birthday a few years ago :) Here’s a link to the Puffin’s children’s book version at Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Yeh-Shen-Cinderella-Story-Ai-Ling-Louie/dp/0698113888.

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By: Sally http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-288977 Sally Wed, 10 Aug 2011 04:00:03 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-288977 Gruesome they are. The Grimm’s versions are not neat and tidy and really make Disney look commical. I think the messages come across so much better in the real versions. Cinderelle overcame so much more and her step sisters were much nastier pieces of work (cut of their heals and toes just to make their foot fit and get to marry the prince?!) that it makes the outcome much more significant. But not all end happily ever after, just like life. I’ve been meaning to read more original fairy tales, but my only experience so far are the German ones in the original German.

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By: Sarah http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-288966 Sarah Tue, 09 Aug 2011 23:16:14 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-288966 Yes, they are much more grim than what kids are used to now! However, we read some of them to my 5 year old boy anyway. I’m not sure it’s such a bad thing for them to know about death and bad guys etc… i mean some stories from the bible or book of mormon aren’t that much tidier than the old fairy tales! We recently read a pretty traditional version of “The Gingerbread Man” you know…where he gets eaten by the fox at the end. “That wasn’t a happy ending”" said my kids!

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By: Beth T. http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-288962 Beth T. Tue, 09 Aug 2011 21:46:34 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-288962 When I was a very little girl, my babysitter was a German lady and her Portuguese husband. My mom, born in Iowa, loved the way Frieda and Tito expanded our lives with things from their own cultures–food, expressions, holiday traditions, etc. There were times, however, when I would come home with my three-year-old version of something I’d learned at their house and she would have to investigate to find out what the heck I was talking about.

Where I’m going with this, is that my favorite fairy tale from that time came directly from Frieda. My mom thought for sure I had gotten it wrong–I could not have been told a story about a wolf who ate little goats, and then when sleeping was sliced open so that the goats could pop out, and heavy stones placed back inside his belly. This led to his gruesome drowning when he leaned over a stream to get a drink and fell in. The heavy stones held him down, despite his desperate attempts to live.

But no. That’s the story and I loved it. My mother tracked down a copy, in the Book of Knowledge, I think, and read it to me, sans Frieda’s beautiful accent.

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By: Jeannek http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-288956 Jeannek Tue, 09 Aug 2011 19:56:06 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-288956 London based folio society do a lovely edition, looks very like the one in your photo. A delish baby gift.

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By: jeanne@bellissimakids.com http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-288953 jeanne@bellissimakids.com Tue, 09 Aug 2011 19:09:48 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-288953 What an exquisite book. Thanks so much for blogging about this. I still love fairytales and was buying them as an adult before I had kids!

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By: Heather W. http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-288951 Heather W. Tue, 09 Aug 2011 18:52:50 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-288951 I think it’s ok to read these stories to kids. I think there are too many sugar coated versions of stuff out there now. Not every story ends happily ever after.

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By: Ashlea Walter http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-288947 Ashlea Walter Tue, 09 Aug 2011 17:41:48 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-288947 I read the Brothers Grimm stories in high school German class and yes, they are pretty evil. A much different perspective on teaching children life lessons… I was even surprised by some of the older Disney movies that we’ve seen since Wren was born, e.g., Pinnochio. Yikes!

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By: Alysha http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-288940 Alysha Tue, 09 Aug 2011 16:15:19 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-288940 Perrault was more of a writer than a collector, but the Grimms definitely just stole!
Andersen’s Little Mermaid is a heartbreaker! I would definitely suggest reading Mme. Beaumont’s Beauty and the Beast (http://www.pitt.edu/~dash/beauty.html). Beaumont was an French teacher living in England and wrote beautifully. My favorite part of this story is as my literature professor remarked “The Beast really doesn’t matter, it is all about Beauty!”

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By: Rachel http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-288939 Rachel Tue, 09 Aug 2011 15:59:12 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-288939 I grew up with Disney’s take on fairy tales (I had the books where you read along with the record and when it chimed you knew it was time to turn the page) and was horrified as a 6 or 7 year old to see an animated version of the Hans Christian Anderson Little Mermaid and when her soul turned to sea foam in the end I was stunned. I’m pretty sure it was the first non happy ending I’d ever seen but I think it really helped me decide at a very young age to never change myself for a boy no matter how much I liked him.

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By: Abbie http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-288937 Abbie Tue, 09 Aug 2011 15:17:09 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-288937 I grew up on Hans Christian Anderson and the Grimm brothers (my father also used to read me Edgar Allen Poe and I swear I’m a normal person). Imagine my surprise when Disney came out with their take on the Little Mermaid. I love the old versions, but I think this is one of those things that just depends on your children and their tastes. Even if the stories are “gruesome” the pictures are gorgeous.

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By: Julia's Bookbag http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-288934 Julia's Bookbag Tue, 09 Aug 2011 14:39:48 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-288934 Oh I meant to also tell you that my husband gave me a Hans Christian Anderson compilation of fairy tales illustrated by Dulac — HE IS AMAZING!!

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By: Julia's Bookbag http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-288932 Julia's Bookbag Tue, 09 Aug 2011 14:37:46 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-288932 Oh Gabrielle, I wrote about this particular book awhile back! http://www.juliasbookbag.com/2011/04/one-more-day-of-french-week.html — I agree that the age range for these should be about 7+ depending on your kiddo — I read them when I was pretty young and never batted an eyelash about the rough aspects, for whatever that’s worth :) Your copy has amazing illustrations!!! Lovely!

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By: amy j. http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-288931 amy j. Tue, 09 Aug 2011 14:31:15 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-288931 We own that book…an antique copy. My husband actually has several antique copies of various fairy tales from Europe. His father read him some as a boy and as a father he’s continued that tradition. Yes, they are much darker than the watered down versions children hear today. When our girls were younger (they are nine and six now), I was not pleased when he read them. But the girls loved them and our oldest actually found an antique fairytale book from the late 18oos last year that she gave to him for a Christmas present! Currently, she’s on the last book of the series Sisters Grimm (HIGHLY recommend this book series). So I guess her dad’s influence has rubbed off. My youngest’s favorite is Jack the Giant Killer : ). My husband is very fond of the illustrations in these books as well.

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By: Sammy http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-288928 Sammy Tue, 09 Aug 2011 14:06:09 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-288928 Actually, I believe that while Perrault and the Grimms collected old folk tales, Andersen was the author of his fairy tales. Of course he was inspired by existing “folk tales” as he was imitating the genre, but his stories are original “literary tales” (e.g. the Ugly Duckling).
But then again, I’m really no expert, I’ve just read them (Anderson’s and Grimms’ and some original medieval tales).

I agree with Maude that early fairy tales are pretty gruesome, but I prefer them over Anderson’s, because some of those are really gloomy! (The Little Match Girl…)

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By: Kaet99 http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-288925 Kaet99 Tue, 09 Aug 2011 13:10:21 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-288925 Correct me if I’m wrong, but fairy tales were written as lessons, sometimes cautionary tales. If you let your kids see that and have fun doing a little analysis together, they are great reads by 7-8. Heck, scriptures can be pretty gruesome, too. :) Once again, great discussion opportunity. Side note: Have you ever seen Into the Woods? Such an interesting take on fairy tales. Love, love, love it.

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By: Dee http://www.designmom.com/2011/08/book-of-the-week-charles-perraults-fairy-tales/comment-page-1/#comment-288920 Dee Tue, 09 Aug 2011 12:00:07 +0000 http://www.designmom.com/?p=12820#comment-288920 What a beautiful book! I love fairy tales and have a small collection of versions from around the world. I do read the early versions to my kiddos once they reach 5 or 6. I think they can handle a little scariness then. Have you read A Tale Dark & Grimm? It’s a little dark but so, so funny. The kids and I really like it.

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