Cinderella is a childhood fairytale that we all love and remember. It is a tragedy that turns into love and happily ever after in the end. In contrast to this popular story, Anne Sexton's version of Cinderella is a dark and twisted version of the classic fairy tale. It takes on a whole new perspective and is fairly different from the childhood fairytale that most of society knows. The poem takes less of a focus on the happy ever after in Cinderella and makes it into vivid bloody and violent images. She retreats more toward the pain and neglect. The poem is not based off the Disney version of Cinderella, but rather original dark version by Brothers Grimm. Sexton uses a very sarcastic and
“Going up in the World: Class in ‘Cinderella’” is a scholarly article written by Elisabeth Panttaja that analyzes the roles of the mothers and the importance of class within these times. Panttaja focuses her article on the Grimm version, which is most famously critiqued and discussed. The article analyzes the importance of the mothers, which leads to the overall concept that the natural mother’s role seems irrelevant, yet Cinderella’s entire destiny is based upon her. The mother’s also show similar goals: get their daughter(s) married into power. Cinderella wins this battle, however, for she is the “true bride.”
Anne Sexton was a junior-college dropout who, inspired by emotional distress, became a poet. She won the Pulitzer Prize as well as three honorary doctorates. Her poems usually dealt with intensely personal, often feminist, subject matter due to her tortured relationships with gender roles and the place of women in society. The movies, women’s magazines and even some women’s schools supported the notion that decent women took naturally to homemaking and mothering (Schulman). Like others of her generation, Sexton was frustrated by this fixed feminine role society was encouraging. Her poem “Cinderella” is an example of her views, and it also introduces a new topic of how out of touch with reality fairy tales often are. In “Cinderella”, Anne Sexton uses tone and symbolism to portray her attitude towards traditional gender roles and the unrealistic life of fairy tales.
Have you ever wondered if there were other versions of Cinderella? Well there are, there isn’t just one version of Cinderella. Each version is a little bit different from each story because of the culture behind it. For example the “Cinderella” we know and love and the Ireland version the “Cinderlad”.The two cinderella stories, “Cinderlad” the Irish version and “Cinderella” the French version have both differences and similarities. Using the Motif “Damsel in distress” I can show that they are different & similar because of the culture they originated from and their social necessities.
In her article, “Cinderella: Not So Morally Superior,” Elisabeth Panttaja illustrates the important role of parents in a childhood. She talks about the importance the mother plays in all versions of Cinderella as well as evidence showing what lack of parenthood does to children. Panttaja claims by way of the Grimms Brothers version of Cinderella and how each mother wants to guarantee a bright and happy future for their daughters by marrying them off to the prince. The similarities between the wanting of Cinderella and the stepsisters married- and doing anything to get it- contradicts the idea that Cinderella and her mother were morally superior, or different at all, from the stepmother and sisters.
In the familiar more traditional version, Cinderella is a poor maid girl that, with the help of fairy godmother, gets a chance to meet prince charming. They fall in love, get married, and live happily ever after, and then what? What is a happily ever after? Is this even a realistic thought? In the dark comedic poem Cinderella, Anne Sexton forces the reader to examine this question. Utilizing literary devices such as tone, imagery, and style, Sexton encourages the reader to think about how silly and unlikely a fairy tale ending actually is.
“Oh, fairytales, where desperate, naïve girls sacrifice everything for their so-called prince charming”. The realities of these childhood classics are controversial, sexist, and dark, yet, it’s also adored by millions of young girls around the world. Cinderella, an often sugar-coated story, is a great example on how sexism and gender stereotypes prevail in literature. The Grimm Brothers touch on a variety of devices, from characterization to symbolism, all revealing the inequality in not only fictional literature but our real-life society as well. A feminist literary critic will interpret these controversial themes and apply their beliefs of equal rights into the study of the Grimm Brother’s Cinderella.
The Grimm Brothers version of Cinderella is a written down oral story that people passed down from generation to generation, meant to teach a lesson about piety and good behavior. Before the Grimm Brothers ever wrote it down, the story had been told several times by memory. It is thus not surprising that the descriptions of certain events in the story, such as the way Cinderella went to the Ball, are lacking in details. It is obvious that these parts of the story are unimportant to the overall message of the story. Instead, it focuses on the piety of Cinderella and the wickedness of the step-sisters. Through the events of the story, it becomes obvious that the goodness of Cinderella is justly rewarded, and that
The Prince stereotypes the role of women being in need of a destined lover. He is the one that identifies Cinderella as the one in the dress, though excluding behavior, her appearance dazzles him for two nights at the ball. Most importantly, he’s not the hero of the fairytale, but readers can interpret the fairy godmother as the savior of Cinderella’s demise. The role of magic comes in part with the acceptance of achieving the imagery of an elegant woman, impressing the Prince who gains interest in her. The
Adults realize that despite Cinderella’s charismatic traits, Cinderella’s behaviour in Perrault’s tale is not acceptable for today’s modern western woman.
Cinderella’s story is undoubtedly the most popular fairy tale all over the world. Her fairy tale is one of the best read and emotion filled story that we all enjoyed as young and adults. In Elizabeth Pantajja’s analysis, Cinderella’s story still continues to evoke emotions but not as a love story but a contradiction of what we some of us believe. Pantajja chose Cinderella’s story to enlighten the readers that being good and piety are not the reason for Cinderella’s envious fairy tale. The author’s criticism and forthright analysis through her use of pathos, ethos, and logos made the readers doubt Cinderella’s character and question the real reason behind her marrying the prince. Pantajja claims that
The men in “Cinderella” also value women for their beauty. The prince has a ball for all the maidens in the land to find his future wife, which “amounts to a beauty contest” (Lieberman 386) for a new trophy wife. While some argue that Cinderella’s rebellion of going against her stepmother’s instructions of staying home shows that the story has feminist qualities, the prince weakens her achievement when he chooses her only because of her beauty as “girls win the prize if they are the fairest of them all” (Lieberman 385). Her need for independence is transformed into the prince’s need for a pretty wife, making her again an object in her family. Once integrated into the prince’s family, Cinderella goes from the maid of her family to the smiling porcelain doll next to the prince as the “first job of a fairy tale princess is to be beautiful” (Röhrich 110). This gives the impression that the only way
Cinderella is a fairytale for children that displayed love, loss and miracles; however, when it is further analyzed, it has a deeper meaning. Cinderella is a story about a young girl who became a servant in her own home after her father remarried a malicious woman with two spoiled daughters. She was humiliated and abused yet she remained gentle and kind. She received help from her fairy godmother to go to the prince’s ball after her stepmother rejected her proposal. Cinderella and the Prince fell madly in love but she had to leave at twelve o’clock and forgot to tell him her name but she left her glass slipper behind. He sent his servants to find her and Cinderella was the only maiden in the kingdom to fit into the shoes. She
Remarkably throughout all of history, females have encountered the issue of oppression while any form of power is ripped away from them. The concept is plainly indicated within countless fairytales, much like Cinderella as it is narrated from the female perspective. When examining and using the feminist lens for the folk tale of Cinderella, numerous power relationships were clearly viewed. In other words, the relationships correspond with both gender, and how the individual is portrayed. At the beginning of the story’s context, the power connection between Cinderella and her step-mother is rather obvious. In addition, the constant power relationships among male and females within the general public greatly influences Cinderella. Therefore every
When someone mentions the name “Cinderella”, the first thing that usually comes to our minds is the fairytale in which the fair maiden who works so hard yet it treated so poorly gains her “fairytale ending” with a wave of a magic wand. However, the fairytale of Cinderella written by the Grimm Brothers has multiple differences in plot from the fairytale we all usually think of. The plot of the Cinderella written by the Grimm Brothers, written in 1812, is that a young female’s mother passes away early in the story, departing with the message to Cinderella to remain “pious and good”. Cinderella remained true to this message given to her by her mother, and she showed this in her work ethic. Because Cinderella had remained pious and good, her mother, in return, watched over her in the form of the birds above her grave that gave Cinderella help and material things that she needed. In the end, Cinderella has her “happily ever after”, for when the prince held a festival to find a new bride, she was chosen due to her insurmountable beauty. The feminist lens critiques how females are commonly represented in texts, and how insufficient these representations are as a categorizing device. These representations of women often include them being passive and emotional—staying back while the men do the work. Cinderella relates to the feminist lens because she fits into the typical representations of women created by men. Feminist criticism is important to recognize because women are often falsely represented as helpless, thus needing a man to come to their rescue. It is common in literature to see helpless women, crying and begging for help instead of being able to work out their own problems and hardships. Others, however, may believe that it is still important to uphold the fundamentals of the feminist lens because it keeps the man in power, which they say is important in keeping the man the head of the household. Cinderella thoroughly represents the feminist lens because it shows how women in literature uphold the representations of passive and emotional, created by the man.