Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Beauty and the Beast, and Other Fairy Tales

A few months ago my dad read Beauty and the Beast from the Blue Fairy Book outloud to us. And since then I have decided that Beauty and the Beast is one of, if not my favorite, fairy tale. The reason is this: Beauty and the Beast have a reason to fall in love. In the typical fairy tale the hero and heroine fall in love seemingly on the spur of the moment or because they like the other's looks. Well I suppose Beauty does't have the problem of falling in love because of the Beast's looks, although he might have that temptation. But anyways, Beauty and the Beast have long talks every night and they get to know each other before they fall in love. This is true to a certain extent of Snow White and Rose Red as well. But in that one they play with the Bear more then have talks with him. By the way if you're not familiar with Snow White and Rose Red you can read it here. If you're not familiar with Beauty and the Beast then I suggest you go to the library in the near future.
So anyways any thoughts on this???? Any amendments to what I said??????


Dr. Thursday said...

For your reference, here is GKC:

But I deal here with what ethic and philosophy come from being fed on fairy tales. If I were describing them in detail I could note many noble and healthy principles that arise from them. There is the chivalrous lesson of "Jack the Giant Killer"; that giants should be killed because they are gigantic. It is a manly mutiny against pride as such. For the rebel is older than all the kingdoms ... There is the lesson of "Cinderella," which is the same as that of the Magnificat -exaltavit humiles. [Latin: "He has lifted up the lowly." See Lk 1:52] There is the great lesson of "Beauty and the Beast"; that a thing must be loved before it is loveable. There is the terrible allegory of the "Sleeping Beauty," which tells how the human creature was blessed with all birthday gifts, yet cursed with death; and how death also may perhaps be softened to a sleep.
[GKC, Orthodoxy CW1:253]

[Morris] has the supreme credit of showing that the fairy tales contain the deepest truth of the earth, the real record of men's feeling for things. Trifling details may be inaccurate, Jack may not have climbed up so tall a beanstalk, or killed so tall a giant; but it is not such things that make a story false; it is a far different class of things that makes every modern book of history as false as the father of lies; ingenuity, self-consciousness, hypocritical impartiality. It appears to us that of all the fairy-tales none contains so vital a moral truth as the old story, existing in many forms, of Beauty and the Beast. There is written, with all the authority of a human scripture, the eternal and essential truth that until we love a thing in all its ugliness we cannot make it beautiful.
[GKC, "William Morris and His School" in Varied Types]

Ria said...

Thanks for the quotes, it's so cool to have Chesterton quotes for all these things!!!!