Monthly Archives: April 2013
This week in class, we had to read a variety of different Native American folk tales. I have to say that I have enjoyed all of these stories immensely. Not only are they unique in their own way (because of the stories originating from a different culture) but they are also really awesome.
The difference between a Native American folk tale and any other folk tale is that these stories have a more obvious message. Many folk tales from other cultures dance around a hidden theme, but these always get straight to the point. Not only are they straightforward, but they also demonstrate strong family and religious values. For example, in one of the stories I read about a young boy and elk dogs, there was strong family involvement. There was a family that took a boy in even though he was considered stupid. When he wanted to thank the family for taking him in, he went off into the woods to find these coveted elk dogs. No one had made it back from this journey before. The young boy returned and brought great honor on his family. This showed his thankfulness, and the overall importance of family in these tales.
Though there are a lot of different things about Native American folk tales vs stories from other cultures, there are also things that these tales have in common. The main thing that I have found is that pretty much all folk tales have a representation of a Archetype. Most commonly found is the Trickster. I have yet to see a genre of fair/folk tales without the presence of a Trickster.
Most everyone knows the story of Cinderella. It’s the most well known and typical rags to riches story. The question is though, how realistic is this? In the stories I have read in class, most of the Cinderella-like tales were about “rags to riches through magic and marriage”. There was typically some form of magic that provided help to the Cinderella character. This lead her to her “fairy tale” ending. In the Disney movie case, the magic was absolutely necessary. Without magic, she would have remained where she was in her life, and would have never met the prince. Because magic was involved, she was allowed to do so many great things. If asked, “could this happen in real life?” most people would say “No Way!” I disagree. I think there are definitely magical things that happen to normal people in real life. I believe in fate. I think someone could most assuredly grow up in a terrible situation, and then when they get older they have their lives turned around. People can change this through marriage or even meeting a random person on the street. You never know who can/will change your life. For all those people out there who feel down in the dumps about having a horrible life, you too can end up like Cinderella! Just keep your chin held high and continue on believing that anything can happen! Overall, Cinderella is a great fairy tale, and everyone should look to it to make them feel better when they’re having a bad day.