The Snow Queen Or Snedronningen Analysis

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Written in 1844, The Snow Queen or Snedronningen by Hans Christian Andersen is a unique and feminist tale about the journey to adulthood, however with deeper analysis through both a psychoanalytical and feminist perspective it is evident that the underlying themes of this fairy-tale reflect the views of a patriarchal society. The Snow Queen, is centred around a young boy, Kay, whose complex personality is represented by Gerda, his childhood friend, and The Snow Queen.
Although this fairy-tale is titled ‘The Snow Queen’ through a psychoanalytical view, Kay is in fact the main character whose dual personality is represented by Gerda and The Snow Queen. He is a young boy on the journey to adulthood and whilst discovering his identity, Kay develops
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She represents the value of innocence on Kay’s behalf as whenever he is with her he possess this quality and he ultimately reaches the harshness of both the Snow Queen’s life as well as adulthood when he forgets about Gerda, a symbol of his purity. Although unlike Kay, who had to learn from his mistakes and rash decisions, Gerda was able to mature steadily throughout her own journey and finally they are both able to arrive at a balance between the innocence of childhood and maturity of adulthood. During her journey Gerda also discovers her sexual identity as like Kay she too was in the phallic stage of her psychosexual development. Freudian theory suggests that children of this age begin taking an interest in their own genitals as well as that of others. In this tale flowers are a symbol of female genitals and Gerda’s sexual discoveries are especially clear in the third story where Hans Christian Andersen writes, “The next day, and for many days after, Gerda played with the flowers in the warm sunshine”. Flowers have been present in Gerda’s life both at her home and during her journey, however only in the “very old lady’s” house by the river does she take notice of them hence showing sexual development. Through a feminist perspective many may argue that Gerda is a strong and independent young woman who had the ability to take on what was traditionally a man’s role and embark on a journey to …show more content…
She is a symbol of Kay’s sexual desires which unlike Gerda aren’t pure or virtuous. Throughout the tale the Snow Queen is portrayed as a powerful and evil figure with a kiss capable of murder. She is portrayed as a symbol of darkness and death, however she isn’t evil at all. The Snow Queen was constantly kind to Kay and represents a motherly figure as well as the harsh reality of adulthood. Her world is void of warmth both literally and figuratively due to societal views on adulthood. The Snow Queen, a symbol of sexual thoughts, is secluded from society just as many other thoughts related to adulthood are in order to protect children. This, however, through a feminist view could also be seen as the sexualisation and suppression of a strong and capable woman. The Snow Queen’s isolation from society suggests that all powerful women are vain or evil and hence a force to protect the community from. She is an adaptation of the ‘Hot Witch’ trope in which she is mysterious and sexy yet elegant, unlike the ‘Wicked Witch’ who is old and ugly but possesses her own authority. The ‘Hot Witch’ has powers which are more subtle. The problem with this trope is that much like in this tale, the character’s authority is undermined and they are seen merely as an object. By sexualising the Snow Queen this tale is ultimately undermining her power and telling an already sexist society that all

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