The purpose of this paper is to study on the politic appropriation in the process of developments from Western folk tales to fairy tales, and from fairy tales to modern animations. The process of developments obviously reflect the changes of conscious ...
The purpose of this paper is to study on the politic appropriation in the process of developments from Western folk tales to fairy tales, and from fairy tales to modern animations. The process of developments obviously reflect the changes of consciousness of writers(directors), publishers(producers) and readers(audience), as well as technical changes in each period. The object of this study is Brothers Grimm's fairy tales, which offered a variety of subject matters to modern animations, and Walt Disney's animations, one of the most successful enterprise animations.
The rise of the fairy tale in the Western world as the mass-mediated cultural form coincided with the decline of feudalism and the formation of the bourgeois. As a literary genre, the fairy tale reflected a change in values and ideological conflicts in the transitional period from feudalism to early capitalism. Fairy tales began to be printed very actively at the point when they included not only the aristocratic but also the bourgeois as their readers and when a commercial market was developing for children’s literature in the 19th century.
Along with this, the perspectives of narratives and literary styles were appropriated by writers. A number of folk tales were transformed into fairy tales after going through major changes. The violence, crudity and fantastic character of the originals were cut out so that children would not be harmed by reading fairy tales. In the process of this transformation, the grotesque realism of folk culture, such as earthly humor, burlesque twists, obscenity, etc., disappeared or became weakened.
Folk tales also became assimilated into the official canon of children’s literature, which had been more interested in producing docile minds than playful and creative bodies. Most of the fairy tales written in this period were didactic or exemplary stories for children, in order to satisfy not children but clergymen, teachers and parents.
After publishing the first volume of <Children’s and Household Tales> in 1812, the Brothers Grimm continued to publish the collection six times in succession until 1857. They also transformed violent and obscene factors in folk tales into didactic and Christian patriarchal factors. In this respect, they were called not only collectors of pure folk tales but also creative contaminators. Some scholars criticized them for the excessive transformation of folk tales.
The social regulation of desire and disobedience became the central issues of fairy tales in the 19th century in Europe. Fairy tales served as instruments of socialization and acculturation, so that they offered good examples of the pedagogy of fear.
The reception of fairy tales in the Western world has been heavily influenced by the Disney corporation. <Snow and the Seven Dwarfs>, produced in 1937 as Disney’s first full-length animation, is very important because it became the prototype not only for Disney’s other fairy tale films but for most animated films based on fairy tales by other producers. The uniformity of structure, style and themes established in 1937 was further developed in Disney’s other animated films.
Disney’s popular culture reflects the socio-economic conditions of his times, and he was able to perceive the needs of both the culture industry and the American people in his works. The company’s success was magnified because of the widespread popularity of its products, as well as abundant praise on it. Disney’s products incorporated elements of other commercialized forms of entertainment and mass culture.
From the mid-1930s, Disney films were increasingly interpreted by critics. Disney’s versions of fairy tales are sometimes better knwon than the originals, especially in the U.S.A. The Disneyfication of fairy tales raised harsh criticism from folklorists, educators, and children’s literature experts, for sanitizing the original and promoting Americanization.