How Fairy Tales Teach Us to Love the Unknowable
Love is born in the quiet ways we reveal ourselves; how we notice and love our partners when they take on new, surprising forms.
The second sister responds the same, but the third accepts his offer: “Indeed, I will wed thee; a pretty creature is the hoodie.”
“The Hoodie-Crow” belongs to the type of tales categorized as “the search for the lost husband.” A more famous example of this tale type is the Norwegian fairy tale “East O’ the Sun, West O’ the Moon,” a beautiful story in which a youngest daughter weds a terrifying bear only to discover that he is a handsome, enchanted young man who casts off his bear pelt in the dark hours of night. A cousin to “Beauty and the Beast,” this tale type has firm roots in Greek mythology, with the story of Cupid and Psyche.
le petit mort
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What saves these lost mothers is different in every fairy tale; often they’re brought back simply by virtue of being recognized. For me, coming back to life took time.
Seizing the Means of Enchantment: What Fairy Tales Can Teach Us About Class and Wealth in the Age of the Mega-Corporation
Class systems are not fixed in fairy tales—in fact, fairy tales would almost seem to argue for the redistribution of wealth.
The long and fluid history of fairy tales shows us that men who want to control, dehumanize, and violate women have always existed.
More in this series
Too many people are fed one version of a story, a false one, and do not interrogate it. But the world of fairy tales is rife with opportunities to practice critical thinking, if only we look closer.
What, exactly, are the building blocks that make a fairy tale a fairy tale? And who—or what—might be making them in the future?