Fairy Tales: The Origins, History, and Interpretations of the World’s Most Famous Fairy Tales (English Edition)
*Explains how the genre was formed and theories regarding real life origins of popular fairy tales
*Includes online resources and a bibliography for further reading
*Includes a table of contents
Dense forests, evil stepmother, beautiful girl, dwarfs in mines, a prince and, eventually, poisoning (in that order). Sound familiar? Most will recognize the basic plot of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, one of the most popular fairy tales in history. Even if the passing of time (and Disney) embellished it with a thousand details, in particular the happy ending, this and other tales reflect the Sitz im Leben or setting in life in which fairy tales emerged. The stories, which were transmitted orally during the Middle Ages, are like fogged windows to the way of life, the kind of people and social conditions of the regions where they took their final shape. In some instances, such as Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, they may be echoing historical facts. And the poisoned apple? Sander thinks that the lethal fruit was added later, during the stage of oral transmission, in remembrance of a man who really existed in Germany and was arrested for giving poisoned apples to children because he thought they were stealing from him.