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Little Red Riding Hood

Slides on Little Red Riding Hood

Little Red Riding Hood

  1. 1. Little Red Riding Hood craigcarey.net @ccareylit
  2. 2. “Little Red Riding Hood” “Little Red Cap” “Red Riding Hood”
  3. 3. How can we account for the tale’s popularity?
  4. 4. Why is little red riding hood almost always an innocent, pretty girl from the village? The Innocent Girl
  5. 5. How is the wolf personified?
  6. 6. There was a little cat in the room who watched her eat and aid: “Phooey! You’re a slut if you eat the flesh and drink the blood of granny.” “Take your clothes off, my child,” said the wolf, “and come into bed with me.” “Where should I put my apron?” “Throw it into the fire, my child. You won’t be needing it any longer.” When she asked the wolf where to put all her other things, her bodice, her dress, her skirt, and her stockings, each time he said: “Throw them into the fire, my child. You won’t be needing them any longer.” “The Story of Grandmother” One of the earliest versions
  7. 7. Little Red Riding Hood First published in print by Charles Perrault in 1697
  8. 8. Little Red Cap Brothers Grimm version published in 1812
  9. 9. “Little Red Cap” Brothers Grimm Version “She left the path and ran off into the woods looking for flowers. As soon as she picked one she saw an even more beautiful one somewhere else and went after it, and so she went deeper and deeper into the woods.” Straying from the path…
  10. 10. “Instead of firing, he took out a pair of scissors and began cutting open the belly of the sleeping wolf. After making a few snips, he could see a red cap faintly. After making a few more cuts, the girl jumped out, crying: “Oh, how terrified I was! It was so dark in the wolf’s belly!” And then the old grandmother found her way out alive, though she could hardly breathe. Little Red Cap fetched some large stones and filled the wolf’s belly with them. When he awoke, he was about to bound off, but the stones were so heavy that his legs collapsed and he fell down dead. The Huntsman’s Surgery
  11. 11. Perrault and Grimm Version • In both of these versions, she courts her own downfall; she is the result of her own fall; despite the objections of many that nobody can be this stupid…. • The Perrault version ends with the wolf falling asleep after swallowing red riding hood. In Brothers Grimm version, a hunter comes to the rescue and cuts open the sleeping wolf with his axe. Little Red Riding Hood and her grandmother emerge unharmed. • Perrault version centered on erotic metaphor; the Grimm version eliminates traces of erotic playfulness and reframes it in service of child pedagogy
  12. 12. The Moral? • Warning about not obeying your mother • Warning about talking to strangers, especially those who appear charming and tame • Warning about the dangers of forest as compared with the safety of the village
  13. 13. Other Interpretations? • Story about the natural cycles; allegory of day and night • Story about a girl’s puberty rite; sexual awakening • Story about an abduction and rape • Story of the girl’s rebirth • Story about a wolf suffering from womb envy
  14. 14. What about elements of play, pleasure, nonsense, and enjoyment?
  15. 15. Modern Adaptations
  16. 16. Before reading the various versions of "Little Red Riding Hood", I was under the impression that our modern versions of the fairy tales omitted some of the violence and gore found in the older versions, but the moral remained essentially unchanged.  What struck me the most while reading the various versions was the reaction of Little Red Riding Hood in the newer versions of the tale.  In the three versions written during the 20th century, Little Red Riding Hood fights back and kills the wolf.  In James Thurber's "the Little Girl and the Wolf" [1940] she "took an automatic out of her basket and shot the wolf dead." (17).  In Chiang Mi's "Goldflower and the Bear" [recorded in 1979] "Goldflower threw the spear into its mouth. With a groan, the Bear fell flat.Goldflower slid down the tree and kicked the dead Bear." (20).  In Ronald Dahl's "Little Red Riding Hood and the Wolf" [1982], "She whips a pistol from her knickers. She aims it at the creature's head And bang bang bang, she shoots him dead. (22). The endings of the stories are changed so drastically that I wonder if the accompaning moral changes as well.  Do other fairy tales also have modern versions where the so-called "victim" fights back? Discussion Question about Adaptations Jennifer Rhodes asks:
  17. 17. Post-Grimm Adaptations • In 19th and 20th century, the popularity of the fairy tale soared • Many 20th century versions were influenced by Freudian psychoanalysis and feminist critical theory • Revisionist versions deconstruct the gender stereotypes, reversing the gender and sexual norms associated with original versions
  18. 18. James Thurber Version (1940) When the little girl opened the door of her grandmother’s house she saw that there was somebody in bed with a nightcap and nightgown on. She had approached no nearer than twenty-five feet from the bed when she saw that it was not her grandmother but the wolf, for even in a nightcap a wolf does not look any more like your grandmother than the Metro-Goldwyn lion looks like Calvin Coolidge. So the little girl took an automatic out of her basket and shot the wolf dead. Moral: It is not so easy to fool little girls nowadays as it used to be.
  19. 19. Roald Dahl “Little Red Riding Hood and the Wolf” (1928) ‘What great big ears you have, Grandma.’ ‘All the better to hear you with,’ the Wolf replied. ‘What great big eyes you have, Grandma,’ said Little Red Riding Hood. ‘All the better to see you with,’ the Wolf replied. He sat there watching her and smiled. He thought, I’m going to eat this child. Compared with her old Grandmamma She’s going to taste like caviare.
  20. 20. Roald Dahl “Little Red Riding Hood and the Wolf” (1928) Then Little Red Riding Hood said, ‘But Grandma, what a lovely great big furry coat you have on.’ “That’s wrong!” cried the Wolf. ‘Have you forgot “To tell me what BIG TEETH I’ve got? ‘Ah well, no matter what you say, ‘I’m going to eat you anyway.’ The small girl smiles. One eyelid flickers. She whips a pistol from her knickers. She aims it at the creature’s head And bang bang bang, she shoots him dead.
  21. 21. Roald Dahl “Little Red Riding Hood and the Wolf” (1928) A few weeks later, in the wood, I came across Miss Riding Hood. But what a change! No cloak of red, No silly hood upon her head. She said, ‘Hello, and do please note ‘My lovely furry WOLFSKIN COAT.’
  22. 22. “How Could Red Riding Hood (Have Been So Very Good)?” Written by A.P. Randolph in 1925 First song banned from the radio
  23. 23. This slideshow by Craig Carey is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial- ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License
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