Transgressive Tales

Transgressive Tales

Queering the Grimms

eBook - 2012
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Wayne State

The stories in the Grimm brothers' Kinder- und Hausmärchen (Children's and Household Tales), first published in 1812 and 1815, have come to define academic and popular understandings of the fairy tale genre. Yet over a period of forty years, the brothers, especially Wilhelm, revised, edited, sanitized, and bowdlerized the tales, publishing the seventh and final edition in 1857 with many of the sexual implications removed. However, the contributors in Transgressive Tales: Queering the Grimms demonstrate that the Grimms and other collectors paid less attention to ridding the tales of non-heterosexual implications and that, in fact, the Grimms' tales are rich with queer possibilities.

Editors Kay Turner and Pauline Greenhill introduce the volume with an overview of the tales' literary and interpretive history, surveying their queerness in terms of not just sex, gender and sexuality, but also issues of marginalization, oddity, and not fitting into society. In three thematic sections, contributors then consider a range of tales and their queer themes. In Faux Femininities, essays explore female characters, and their relationships and feminine representation in the tales. Contributors to Revising Rewritings consider queer elements in rewritings of the Grimms' tales, including Angela Carter's The Bloody Chamber, Jeanette Winterson's Twelve Dancing Princesses, and contemporary reinterpretations of both "Snow White" and "Snow White and Rose Red." Contributors in the final section, Queering the Tales, consider queer elements in some of the Grimms' original tales and explore intriguing issues of gender, biology, patriarchy, and transgression.

With the variety of unique perspectives in Transgressive Tales, readers will find new appreciation for the lasting power of the fairy-tale genre. Scholars of fairy-tale studies and gender and sexuality studies will enjoy this thought-provoking volume.


Contributors explore alternative readings and queer possibilities of the Grimm brothers' Kinder- und Hausmärchen (KHM, Children's and Household Tales).

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The stories in the Grimm brothers' Kinder- und Hausmärchen (Children's and Household Tales), first published in 1812 and 1815, have come to define academic and popular understandings of the fairy tale genre. Yet over a period of forty years, the brothers, especially Wilhelm, revised, edited, sanitized, and bowdlerized the tales, publishing the seventh and final edition in 1857 with many of the sexual implications removed. However, the contributors in Transgressive Tales: Queering the Grimms demonstrate that the Grimms and other collectors paid less attention to ridding the tales of non-heterosexual implications and that, in fact, the Grimms' tales are rich with queer possibilities.Editors Kay Turner and Pauline Greenhill introduce the volume with an overview of the tales' literary and interpretive history, surveying their queerness in terms of not just sex, gender and sexuality, but also issues of marginalization, oddity, and not fitting into society. In three thematic sections, contributors then consider a range of tales and their queer themes. In Faux Femininities, essays explore female characters, and their relationships and feminine representation in the tales. Contributors to Revising Rewritings consider queer elements in rewritings of the Grimms' tales, including Angela Carter's The Bloody Chamber, Jeanette Winterson's Twelve Dancing Princesses, and contemporary reinterpretations of both "Snow White" and "Snow White and Rose Red." Contributors in the final section, Queering the Tales, consider queer elements in some of the Grimms' original tales and explore intriguing issues of gender, biology, patriarchy, and transgression.With the variety of unique perspectives in Transgressive Tales, readers will find new appreciation for the lasting power of the fairy-tale genre. Scholars of fairy-tale studies and gender and sexuality studies will enjoy this thought-provoking volume.

Book News
This compilation of essays is inspired by individual Grimm's fairy tales as seen through current academic identity-studies definitions of queerness. As a result, the collection is about womens' identity. Most of the essays celebrate the trangressiveness and bravery of women who enjoy reading about same-sex interaction, gender play, and sex change. The presence of gay or transsexual people isn't required for this approach, so it allows a collection to be flexible and transgressive, but tends to fetishize minorities who aren't present. Scholarly writers from lesbian backgrounds are present here. Some write about readers or characters who love other women. Other contributors are very excited by the gender of garments and spoons. The collection begins with a quote from Michel Foucault, but most of the essays that follow are in more accessible prose. There are pieces featuring quotes from Freud and Barthes in which the purpose of fairy tales is to display partriarchial hatred of women. There are also joyful accounts of beloved fairy tales as guides to the young academic feminist. In between are a range of feminist approaches to reading individual stories, in both personal and impersonal voice. The gem of the collection is a humorous cautionary tale about a feminist academic who sets out to study the gender attitudes of male storytellers in survival cultures. They tell her a humorous cautionary tale about a patriarchial male ethnographer who sets out to study the gender attitudes of women; she queers the story's gender but fails to notice she's the man. Annotation ©2012 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Publisher: Detroit : Wayne State University Press, ©2012
ISBN: 9780814338100
0814338100
Characteristics: 1 online resource (ix, 358 pages) : illustrations
Additional Contributors: Turner, Kay 1948-
Greenhill, Pauline

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