Monthly Archives: March 2013

Bluebeard: A Very Strange Tale.

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Bluebeard may be one of the most interesting stories I have ever read. Not only does it break all the norms of a regular fairy tale, but it is also one of the most disturbing things I’ve ever read in my life. Just as a disclaimer, I would not recommend that any parent read this to their child. In fact, I would suggest that a parent let their child come upon this story on their own. Although I seem rather against this story, I have to say that it is one of my favorites. The imagery that the writers use in any of the Bluebeard tales is amazing and frightening. This story breaks the norms of a regular fairy tale because it does not have a happy ending (in most versions of the tale). It also is very out there. It does not start like most fairy tales where there is a rags to riches situation. Instead, It is a riches to death situation. In Bluebeard, there is a man who tells his wife/future wife not to enter a certain room while he is away. She disobeys and of course she finds something horrible in the room; dead bodies everywhere, blood soaking the floor,  a chopping block with an axe nearby. When the man comes home, he finds that she has entered the room. He is very angry and murders her(or tries to). When Bluebeard first gets these women, he is looking for the most attractive and young. He is not an attractive man, but they go with him anyways. That is really not typical at all for a fairy tale. Typically, there is a rich man, and a poor/unattractive girl. The girl pines for the handsome man, and in the end, he puts all things aside and they end up happily ever after. I like this story the most because it is so different. And it is so beautifully disturbing. It is the only fairy tale ive ever really read about a serial killer. Or a super crazy man who keeps dead people in a room in his house. It reminds me of Criminal Minds the tv show! It’s really amazing, and I like it very much. Call me disturbed, but I really like mixing things up and discovering taboos that people like to avoid!

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A Jungian View of Fairy Tales

You can relate fairy tales to Jungian psychoanalysis very simply. From my previous posts, you can already tell that fairy tales have a much deeper meaning (or you can pull out different meanings for yourself) then it seems. Jungian psychology has a lot to do with Archetypes and Personality types.

An Archetype is is a universally understood symbol or pattern of behavior. Some examples of Archetypes are the Ego, the Shadow, and the Self. Lets talk specifically about the Shadow Archetype for a moment. The Shadow typically represents the villain in the fairy tale. An example of a Shadow character would be Hades from Hercules, or Maleficent from Sleeping Beauty. These characters are dark-souled, and the opposite of the good guy (which is the Ego Archetype). Shadows are necessary in a fairy tale. I have never personally read a fairy tale without a villain.

You can definitely apply the different Personality types to different characters in fairy tales too. Some Personality types are Introvert, Extrovert, Thinking and Feeling. An example of an introvert might be Cinderella. She’s quiet and does what she is told, spending most of her time inside. An Extrovert might be Madam Mim from The Sword In The Stone. She is boisterous, and is never afraid to do what she needs to get her way. As for thinking and feeling personalities, you could look at Winnie the Pooh and Eeyore. Winnie the Pooh is always trying to find a solution to whatever problem arises in the Hundred Acre Wood, where as Eeyore is always sitting there moping about. He is always talking about how he is feeling about the situation instead of actively trying to find a solution. 

Overall, Jung, and other influential psychologists have had many good points when it comes to the brain and the way we act. Pretty much all of the theories that Jung, and others, have explained are all visible in one way or another in fairy tales.Image