Snow White Fairy Tales Analysis

1143 Words 5 Pages
During an individual’s childhood, everyone must have heard of numerous fairy tales such as Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, Peter Pan and etc. A number of fairy tales have a particular message to the audience, such as Hansel and Gretel taught children not wander around, yet we listened to the stories we were told and never questioned them. As we got older and read the stories again, we can perceive that certain fairy tales can illustrate negative messages. One of the pessimistic influences of fairy tales is the portrayal of the women, particularly of the princesses. In this essay, I will examine the Brothers Grimm’s “Snow White and discuss the role of women and how they are portrayed in fairy tales.
Snow White is a classic example of a fairy
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Similarly, to most fairy tales, the character Snow White is a princess whose life is unpleasant until she meets her prince charming. The personality of the princess in “Snow White” demonstrated her personality as feminine, who is naive, timid and affectionate (England, et al. 562). The Brothers Grimm story, “Snow White”, that was written in 1854, at a time in which women were known for taking care of the house and children; this is clearly presented in this fairy tale. When Snow White told the dwarves her story about her step-mother trying to her kill her the dwarves allowed her live with them on one condition, that she would “cook, make beds, wash, sew, and knit, and keep everything clean and orderly” (Grimm, J., & Grimm, W.). This reveals that women were expected to do household and domestic work as the dwarves could have asked her to come with them to look for copper and gold in the mountains instead. In addition, she is not acknowledged for being intelligent or brave, but rather beautiful. For instance, the huntsman was ordered by the Queen to slaughter Snow White, but when he faced Snow White, he was unable to murder her due to her beauty, “she was so beautiful the huntsman had pity on her and said, "Run away, then, you poor child" (Grimm, J., & Grimm, W.). Hence, it discloses that because of Snow White’s beauty she escaped her own death and demonstrates that beauty is the …show more content…
The portrayal of women in fairy tales is educating children that women are frail and susceptible (Green). Do we want to teach young girls that only a man can help her get out of trouble? In the article, “The Development of Gender Stereotyping of Adult Occupations in Elementary School Children” an experiment was conducted asking a mixed group of female and males to write a list of jobs and traits for males and females. The experiment revealed, “most of the secretary, assistant, or housework was categorized under female while lawyers, CEOs, and higher-up positions were designated to males; and [the] same held true when testing for personality traits” (Green). We accept tales as they are and as we grow up, we learn from the books we read and the characters we admire, hence children are unable to recognize the social problems in fairy tales, such as sexism (Gusman). Although some stories have female characters with more capability potency and capability like “Mulan”, but everyone is more likely to recognize tales like “Cinderella” or “Sleeping Beauty” than “Mulan” (Green). These fairy tales can portray a sexist view of female characters by presenting women as weak individuals and that a woman cannot save herself from tribulations, a man has to save her. For example, in “Cinderella”, Cinderella

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