Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Fairy Tales Are The Favourite Bedtime Stories Cultural Studies Essay

butt Tales Are The Favourite Bedtime Stories Cultural Studies EssayFairy levels argon the favourite bedtime stories for unripened barbarianren one of the reasons is because they can learn lessons. Fairy tales corroborate been around for centuries even before they emerged as a literary genre of their own. Children the world over live with been exposed to different sprite tales and folklore.Fairy tales ache in any case been known to be essential in a childs development, because of its suitability to teach young children moral sets while helping children distinguish between deeds that argon healthy and deeds that ar evil, such as vengeance. Fairy tales accomplish this by casting protagonists as familiar children with whom young audiences can easily identify (Cashdan, 2000) in other words, children are able to relate with the protagonists of king tales and as they are just like each other children, except for their titles (Cashdan, 2000). Fairy tales have in additio n been described by Bettleheim (1962) as key means by which subtlety is assimilated by children.Bettelheim (1976) suggests that our unconscious desires are expressed by means of faerie tales and king tales symbolize deep hidden meanings within our beings. For children, he asserts that pouf tales are a wonderful experience because the child feels understood and appreciated deep down in his feelings, hopes, and anxieties, with turn out theses all having to be dragged up and investigated in the harsh light of a rationality that is still beyond him (Bettelheim, 1976). Christians (2009) summarizes this as faery tales are more than naturally suited for children because children can fill a deep psychological need with stories.Fairy tales have also received increasing research as a literary genre because of its influence on children who have been exposed to poove tales from a young age. Fairy tales, particularly Western European faerie tales have secured a unique place in literatur e written in English because they have entered our ethnic shorthand via the popularity of English translations of the works of Perrault and the Brothers Grimm as well as Disney movies (Schanoes, 2007) making fay tales a fairly an integral part of childhood. It is also because of the popularity of Western European cigaret tales that Christians (2009) derives that poove tales can now be outlined on their own while receiving considerable scholarly attention due to its widespread influence.On the other hand, feminist writers have cited fag tales as an achievementive means of submitting women to the values of a immemorial society, particularly through depicting the ottoman tale heroines as beautiful and passive. Fairy tales as a literary genre have also been utilise in Western cultures to safeguard the values and conventions of its old societies (Comtois, 1995). These values and conventions embedded in fairy tales, Comtois noned, were consistent with the values that were enforc ed during the times the tales were written. Fox (1997) notes how the maidenlike beauty can be seen as a normative means of friendly control whereby cordial control is accomplished through the internalization of values and norms that serve to restrict womens lives. Doll (2000) also states that good girls become grandized, perfected objects, pedestaled for the phallics gaze, further enforcing that women are shaped into characters that are appealing to males.Many feminist writers such as Freedman (1986), Fox (1977), Dellinger and Williams (1997), Baker-Sperry and Grauerholz (2003), and Stone (1985) have noted how fairy tales, particularly princess-themed fairy tales, often employ the portrayal of feminine beauty as a means of control over women by men and the patriarchal societies in which we live in. steady is a key element in the lives of many women who spend time, resources and effort in the pursuit of the ideal beauty, most often depicted in numerous media. Women relentless st rive to watch over the feminine beauty ideal, which is viewed largely as an oppressive, patriarchal practice that objectifies, devalues, and subordinates women (Baker-Sperry and Grauerholz, 2003).patronage this, many women continue to strive for beauty, believing that it plays a major complaisant role in their lives. Backman and Adams (1991) and Suitor and Reavis (1995) assert that beauty is one of the main shipway self-esteem and social status are gained by young women and adolescent girls. Women not yet want to be beautiful for self-gratification, but also for social purposes, particularly the approval and appraisal by men, whereby according to Freedman (1989), women are aware that beauty comes heavily with men and they thusly work hard to chance on it.The frequent portrayal of women merely as pretty things to look at often create stereotypes that women are exactly that-beautiful dolls who are meant to be seen, and never comprehend and all those who do not adhere to such fem ininity are incompetent and lacking. Dellinger and Williams (1997) found in their breeding Makeup at work Negotiating show rules in the workplace that women who wear makeup in the workplace are seen as healthier and more competent while those who do not are seen in a electronegative light. Women who achieve a high degree of attractiveness are psychologically and socially rewarded (Dellinger and Williams, 1997 Hatfield and Sprecher, 1986).This patriarchal society where women are meant to pursue the ideal feminine beauty is mirrored very heavily in fairy tales, especially princess-themed fairy tales, where beauty is often the only power given(p) to the heroine (Christians, 2009). Jorgensen (2012) declares that beauty is not only linked with success of the heroines in fairy tales but also with character. Fairy tale princesses like Snow White, Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty all rely on using their beauty to entice a prince to liberate them from their burdens depicting the man as the only key to women to free themselves from problems and to provoke their social status.The way most classic fairy tales depict women is capable of exposing young children to womens role stereotyping. pop off to Comtois (1995), feminist writers such as Lieberman (1972), Bottigheimer (1987), Stone (1985), and infinitesimal calculus (1987) have contended that folklore has at least resulted in the perpetuation of stereotypes in society. These feminist writers also assert that traditional fairy tales have not only served as a mirror of society but have been intentionally used to fight societal values which often depict sex roles in narrow, pre delimitated ways (Comtois, 1995). Feminist scholars often consider females in fairy tales to be too passive, pretty, and domestic (if protagonists), or alternately too wicked, ugly, and vicious (if antagonists) (Jorgensen, 2012) and these passive, pretty fairy tale heroines receive rewards when they adhere to said roles (Gauntlett, 2002).1.1 Statement of the ProblemWhile research on fairy tales is not new (with studies of fairy tales dating hazard as far as the 19th century and early 20th century), its research is not widespread, though gaining momentum because of the popularity of Western European fairy tales. enquiry on feminism and sexuality stereotyping in fairy tales have dated back as early as the 1960s with Bettelheims Use of Enchantments (1962) and Heuschers (1963) A psychiatric Study of Fairy Tales Their Origin, Meaning, and Usefulness for example.Much of feminist fairy tale researches focus primarily on the sexual stereotyping of women in fairy tales, as carried out by feminist writers such as Bottigheimer (1987), Stone (1985), Comtois (1995), and Baker-Sperry and Grauerholz (2005). Some research also focuses on the negative impact of fairy tales as found in Stones 1985 study The misuse of enchantment Controversies on the significance of fairy tales. According to Stone (1985) stereotypes are engraved in the perceptions of young women from early childhood and it is practicable that as these young girls progress into young magnanimouss, the gender stereotypes created in their childhood will still persist and perhaps result in negative cause regarding their perceptions of gender roles and even confidence and self-image.This study aims to discover the impacts of fairy tales on young self-aggrandizing males who have been exposed to fairy tales, particularly princess-themed fairy tales, to determine what kind of gender stereotypes have been conceptualized and their perceptions towards gender roles depicted in fairy tales. This study also aims to determine whether feminism has had an impact on altering the stereotypes created by fairy tales.Moreover, much of the feminist researches focus more on womens responses and opinions towards fairy tales and these researches are mostly theoretical in nature. Previously, there have been two researches conducted on the impact of fairy tales on mickl e Kay F. Stones 1985 study which involved a prototype consisting of women, children, and men and Rita Comtois 1995 study which featured a run into of women only. According to Comtois (1995), scorn a number of feminist writers who have studied the potential impact of sexual stereotyping in fairy tales (Bottigheimer, 1987 Stone, 1985 Tatar, 1987), the majority of their opinions are speculative, establish on conclusions emaciated from and implications of a fairy tales exposure on its audience.This study will be similar to Rita J. Comtois 1995 qualitative study of the perceived impact of fairy tales on a group of women. This study will also be similar to K. F. Stones 1985 study on the impact of fairy tales, which she conducted in a series of interviews, with a sample of forty-four people, whereby 6 of her respondents were boys. While Comtois research explored the psychological impact fairy tales have had on a female audience which has reached adulthood, this study will kind of use a male audience as the sample.With the use males as the respondents, this study, which adopts a feminist approach, it will be possible to collect data on the opinions of males on the topic without resorting to speculative theories. The results of this study whereby a bigger male sample is used, as opposed to the 1985 study carried out by Stone (with only a small sample of 6 males), it will also be possible to gain more insight into what males think without resorting to conjectures.Purpose of this studyThis study aimsTo determine the effects of exposure of fairy tales from an early age on young male adults regarding the way they perceive sterile gender roles.To establish whether the gender stereotypes in young male adults have slowly changed over time or are carried well into adulthood due to these effects of exposure to princess-themed fairy tales.To determine how feminist views have altered and changed the way young adult males view the stereotypical female characters depicted in fairy tales and women in palpable life.Research questionsAt the end of this study, the researcher hopes to answer the following research questionsWhat are the effects of exposure of fairy tales on young adult males regarding their perspectives of stereotypical gender roles?How have the effects of exposure to princess-themed fairy tales on young adult males from their youths persisted over time?How have feminist views changed the perception of gender stereotypes organize in young male adults regarding female characters depicted in fairy tales as well as woman in real life?1.4 signification of the StudyThe results from this study will help to increase the cognition and awareness on the impact of fairy tales on the development of stereotypes of women in young adult males who have been exposed to fairy tales at a young age. From the study, it will also expand the knowledge base on what kind of gender stereotypes are formed and whether they are identical to the stereotypical characte ristics of women (particularly princesses) that have been depicted in fairy tales. It will also help to shed more or less light on whether these stereotypes have degraded over time in the mindset of young adults, whether they have applied these stereotypes onto women in real life, and whether the onset of feminism has in false further altered these stereotypes.If the gender stereotypes formed through the exposure of fairy tales from an early age still persist throughout the lives of the respondents well into their young adult years, then it will show that fairy tales do have a lasting impact on young adult males. The results of study will depict more insight into how much fairy tales have affected young adult males and what kind of stereotypes have formed as a result of fairy tale exposure.Apart from that, based on the results from this study, it will shed some light on whether young adult male still hold stereotypes towards feminine beauty and women (whereby women who make an ef fort to enhance their appearance are more valued than those who do not) as suggested by Dellinger and Williams (1997) as well Hatfield and Sprecher (1984). Instead of drawing off conclusions from theoretical analysis and assumptions of what kind of impact fairy tales have on men, the data collected from this study will provide will help to polish off what sort of stereotypes that males really have towards women as a result of exposure to fairy tales.1.5 Scope of Study and MethodologyThe independent variable of this study is the princess-themed fairy tales. The dependent variable would be the responses provided from the respondents towards the princess-themed fairy tales text. The hypothesis of this study is that fairy tales do have some impact on the formation of gender stereotypes in men.In this study, the respondents will be male Faculty of Arts and Social Science students studying in UTAR. A total of 50 respondents will be chosen through two sampling methods to participate in t his study where respondents will be required to answer an online questionnaire based on their cognitive knowledge of fairy tales. The first will be the purposive sampling method which is a form of non-probability sampling technique by which the researcher chooses the sample based on who they think would be appropriate for the study.The second method used will be snowball sampling, a non-probability sampling technique where the participants that have already been selected will be asked to recommend new respondents from their friends and acquaintances. In this study, purposive sampling will be used because the selection of respondents will not be hit-or-miss as only male respondents will be chosen and the snowball sampling method is used to gain access to a larger sample of young adult males.1.6 Limitations of the studyThis study will be conducted among Faculty of Arts and Social Science students in UTAR, which would mean that the scope of respondents is limited as the findings canno t be generalized to all students.In this study, there will be no equal distribution of race, so it would not be possible to examine the different responses among races and cultures. Moreover, this study will only focus on princess-themed fairy tales, namely Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, and Cinderella. Therefore, the finding cannot be generalized with other non-princess-themed fairy tales.Furthermore, the use of an online questionnaire, despite its advantages, will not guarantee absolute control over the respondents. Additionally the use of snowball sampling might result in wrong anchoring, whereby there is a lack of definite knowledge on whether the respondents are from the intended target group. Time constraint is also a confinement in this study. With a set time limit allocated, it was not possible to gather more thorough data for more conclusive findings.1.7 Operational damage1.7.1 Fairy TaleA fairy tale, according to Anderson (2000) can be defined as short, imaginative, traditio nal tales with a high moral and magical content. Heuscher (1963) defines the fairy tale as a narration which is not based on historic persons or events, as opposed to an epic or saga.1.7.2 grammatical gender StereotypesGender stereotypesare simple generalizations about the gender attributes, differences, and roles of individuals and groups. Gender stereotypes are widely held beliefs about the characteristics and behaviour of not only women and men but also transgendered people (Manstead and Hewstone 1995) which suggest how men and women should and should not behave. These stereotypes can be positive or negative, but are rarely accurate.1.7.3 FeminismFeminism is the championing of equal rights for men and women. It is defined as the belief in the social, political, and economical equality of the sexes (Rowe-Finkbeiner, 2004) such as the right to vote pursue a career and to have equal social status.1.7.4 Feminine beauty idealFemininity is a set of womanly qualities, behaviours, and ro les mostly associated with girls and women. Baker-Sperry and Grauerholz (2003) define the feminine beauty ideal as the socially constructed belief that physical attractiveness is one womans most important assets, and something all women should strive to achieve and maintain.1.8 Organization of the ThesisThis study consists of a total of five chapters, which are Introduction, writings Review, Methodology, Findings Analysis, and Discussion Conclusion.The Introduction, which is the first chapter, addresses the background of study, statement of problem, purpose of study, research questions, significance of study, scope and limitations of study, the definition of key terms and the organization of the thesis.The second chapter, Literature Review, will outline the definitions of fairy tales, feminine beauty ideal, gender stereotypes, as well as men and their negative reaction towards feminism. Additionally this chapter will also explore some of the previous feminist critiques on fairy tales, the feminine beauty ideal, and gender stereotypes investigating the relationship between fairy tales and feminism through past research, and briefly address the present study.The third chapter, Methodology will explain the research design, sampling, instruments used for data gathering, the pilot study, procedures, and the data analysis.The fourth and one-fifth chapter will present the findings and discuss its significance in relation to the study as well as provide recommendations for further research and conclusions respectively.CHAPTER II publications REVIEW2.0 IntroductionThis chapter will highlight more on the definitions of fairy tales, feminine beauty ideal, gender stereotypes, as well as men and their negative reaction towards feminism. Additionally this chapter will also explore some of the previous feminist critiques on fairy tales, the feminine beauty ideal, and gender stereotypes investigating the relationship between fairy tales and feminism through past resear ch.2.1 Fairy talesIn order to find out about the impact of fairy tales on young adult males, it is first crucial to understand the meaning of fairy tales as well as their purpose in society, and the relationship between feminist criticism, fairy tales, and society-which first begins with the question What is a fairy tale?2.1.1 What is a fairy tale?A fairy tale is a very powerful literary piece that undoubtedly resonates throughout the entire world as everyone has been exposed to fairy tales at one point in their lives, most notably during their childhood. Rohrich (1986) describes fairy tales as one of the deepest and most enduring childhood impressions.If one were to be asked to define a fairy tale, no doubt it would be described as a story with magical elements where a hero does a good deed while rescuing a princess in between, thus saving the day. According to Anderson (2000), fairy tales can be defined as short, imaginative, traditional tales with a high moral and magical content . Heuscher (1963) defines the fairy tale as a narration which is not based on historic persons or events, in contrast to an epic or saga. Jack Zipes (2012) has described the fairy tale as both an polish and simple narrative.Various fairy tale scholars consider fairy tales to be highly structured fictional stories wherein youth protagonists attain riches, marriage, and social justice by means of cleverness, beauty, endurance, and magic (Christians, 2009). However, even with all the definitions provided on fairy tales, it has been noted that fairy tales cannot easily be defined. Rachael Burkholder (2011) explains that even within the genre itself, there are minor discrepancies in definitions, causing overlap within the definitions and such variations within the genre make tripping definitions difficult. Author J.R.R. Tolkien has also confessed to being a fairy tale lover though he uses the term fairy-stories instead. Tolkien himself has found difficulty in defining fairy tales or fa iry-stories in his study On faery StoriesYou will turn to the Oxford English Dictionary in vain. It contains no reference to the combination fairy-story, and is unhelpful on the subject of fairies generally. In the Supplement, fairy-tale is recorded since the year 1750, and its star sense is said to be (a) a tale about fairies, or generally a fairy legend with developed senses, (b) an unreal or incredible story, and (c) a falsehood. (Tolkien, The Tolkien Reader, 1966).2.1.2 The purpose of a fairy taleIt is also important to understand the purpose of the fairy tale. The goal of the fairy tale is to describe the extraordinary and mysterious that is, happenings which transcend everyday reality and as such are impossible to study by any scientific method (Comtois, 1995). Cashdan (2000) states that fairy tales are more than suspense-filled adventures that excite the imagination, more than mere entertainment Cashdan stresses that while the initial attraction of fairy tales may be for entertainment and enjoyment purposes, its lasting value lies in its power to help children deal with the internal conflicts they face in the course of growing upThe fairy tale genre has roots deeply embedded in the traditions of oral tales, myths and legends (Christians, 2009) and many scholars classify fairy tales with folklore narratives-which are the various genres such as legends, fairy tales, myths, epics, ballads, folktales and so on (Christians, 2009). The emergence of the fairy tale as a literary genre has been fairly recent the fairy tale has evolved through many cultural changes, making it one of the more diversified genres (Christrians, 2009). While many people of today often classify fairy tales as childrens literature, these stories were in fact intended for adults instead. However, the tales have been adapted and revise for children because they are a suitable medium for teaching morals (Christians, 2009) because children find it easy to identify with the protagonists in fairy tales, whom they regard as ordinary and therefore similar to themselves (Cashdan, 2000).It is because of this that fairy tales, particularly fairy tales by the Grimm brothers in the nineteenth century were in the first place used as primers for relatively affluent European children and served to turn over moral lessons to them (Zipes, 1988a as cited in Baker-Sperry and Grauerholz, 2003). Bettelheim (1976) has also noted how fairy tales manage to connect with children on a deep psychological level, as opposed to adults, where he argues that for adults, the fairy tale motifs are something one is better off understanding rationally so one can rid oneself of them. As Zipes (2002) states, Most fairy tales are an imaginative depiction of healthy human development and help children understand the motives behind their rebellion against parents and the fear of growing up.Today, fairy tales especially those that have survived the test of time are one of the most widely read genres in the world. They are actively read by children across the globe and its readership transcends the borders of social class and racial groups (Zipes, 1997) while continuing to contain symbolic imagery that legitimates existing race, class, and gender systems (Baker-Sperry and Grauerholz, 2003).2.1.3Fairy tale as a mirror of societyIt is generally recognized by fairy tale scholars such as Jack Zipes (1988), Kay Stone (1985) and Maria Tatar (1987) that fairy tales have been known to reflect the culture and values of the society of their time. As fairy tales are one of the most influential forms of literature, one of the more important purposes of fairy tales was to teach children good moral values as well as the norms of society.Bettelheim (1976) suggests that fairy tales symbolize deep hidden meanings and desires within our unconscious mind, therefore it is much easier for children to identity with fairy tales as children can fill a deep psychological need with stories (Christians, 2 009). Folklorists thus utilize fairy tales to transmit the cultures and traditions acceptable in society to young children. According to Glassie (1999), folklorists learn to emphasize transmission and to think of traditions as things, items, as song texts and quilt patterns passed from generation to generation.Considering the impact of fairy tales on young children, it is not move that fairy tales have been made into a medium used to imprint desired gender roles before being transmitted to the young. Therefore it should also not be unforeseen that childrens literature contains messages, both implicit and explicit, about dominant power structures in society, particularly about gender roles (Clark, Lennon, and Morris, 1993 Crabb and Bielawski, 1994 Kortenhause and Demarest, 1993 Weitzman et al., 1972 as cited in Baker-Sperry and Grauerholz, 2003).With the boot out of technology in the eighteenth century due to the development of the printing press, the publishing power and distribut ion were in the hands of the aristocracy and the bourgeoisie (Comtois, 1995) who had originally considered fairy tales to be lacking in morals for their failure to promote hallowed virtues such as order, discipline, and modesty which were needed to cultivate and thereby tick newly rising capitalist interests and which were consistent with the Christian ethic (Comtois, 1995). In order to keep with the socio-political era in 19th century Germany, many tales were sanitised and adapted by the Grimm brothers.Zipes (1988a, 1988b) had noted that apart from teaching young children appropriate values and attitudes of the time, fairy tales were also intended to teach young girls and women how to become responsible, domestic and attractive to a marriage partner during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Bottigheimer (1986) also found that tales reinforced womens silence, a cultural preference at the time-a trait broad in fairy tale heroines who often stay silent and only speak in resp onse to a question posed by a male character.2.1.4 Feminism, Fairy tales and Patriarchal SocietyOne of the main concerns of feminist scholars is the way traditional fairy tales are used by patriarchal societies to promote narrow, predetermined views on gender roles whereby women are portrayed in a shallow light.Feminist writers like Lieberman (1972), Bottigheimer (1986), Stone (1985), and Tatar (1987) maintain that fairy tales have resulted in the formation of gender stereotypes. Women are expected to behave like fairy tale heroines and thus be seen and not heard-they are expected to be pretty, passive, domesticated and silent.It is a common opinion among feminist writers that fairy tales are indeed a tool used by men in patriarchal societies to impart what they think is considered as proper behaviour for women, setting the blueprint for what they see as proper gender roles in society. Therefore, fairy tales are used to shape and mould women to conform to the patriarchal values and norms or simply as a form of control on womens behaviour.Taking a adpressed look at the use of fairy tales to promote norms and values that are viewed as acceptable in a patriarchal society, Tatar (1987) uncovered some elicit details about fairy tales, prior to and after the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. In her 1987 work The hard facts of the Grimms Fairy tales, Tatar notes that prior to the 18th century, male and female Cinderellas were found in equal frequencies in European folklores. The male counterparts of the present-day female fairy tale heroines were not limited to Cinderella alone-documentations of male Snow Whites were also found in Turkish folklores as well as a Russian male Sleeping Beauty (Tatar, 1987).From this knowledge, it is rather interesting to ponder on the reason for the sudden drastic change in the role of the rescuer and the rescued. When early European folktales have clearly placed women in the roles that, in todays patriarchal society, would convent ionally be bestowed on males, Tatar (1987) prompts us to think twice about male hero patterns when we come across a collection of tales depicting heroines who carry out tasks normally put to male heroes alone or who denounce fathers too weak to protect them from evil stepmothers.2.1.5 egg-producing(prenominal) heroines and patriarchal societyConsistent with the values of the era, the Grimmss tales made it clear that domestic talents were a heroines ideal (Comtois, 1995). However, Tatar (1987) questions the motives of the Grimm brothers, who were responsible for collecting, rewriting and adapting the folklores for the German audience to hold back that the folklores to fit in with the morals, values and norms in 19th century Germany.Women, who were once revered as brave and worthy, were suddenly reduced to the role of damsels in agony morphing into what Kohlbenschlag (1988) refers to as the formula female. The formula female, according to Kohlbenschlag, has two personas-the desirab le object, and the woman who is geared to live for another person (Comtois, 1995) she is a woman who will hold her own needs in order to achieve these two personas.Atkins (2004) states that fairy tale heroines like Snow White, Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty are schooled through their gender constructions, must participate in patriarchal society because their happiness depends on conformity to its rule (Zipes, 1983). Atkins further asserts that these fairy tale heroines are left with no choice as they have no right to challenge their roles as idealized women.There are fairy tale females who do not fit into the passive, obedient category and as these female characters fail to conform (Zipes, 1983), they are typecast as wicked women. These are the wicked female antagonists that we see in fairy tales-mothers, step-mothers, stepsiblings, and evil witches. These women are punished at the end of the tales for their contravention (Mueller, 1986) against the good-girl heroines (Atkins, 2004 ), usually during, immediately after or before the wedding of the heroine princess. This, according to Atkins (2004) makes it clear to readers of fairy tales that the choice is simple-conform to the norms of patriarchal society or suffer the consequences.Atkins (2004) further states that conformity is the key to the kingdom where women must submit themselves to the patriarchal rule, because they are compelled to do so (Rowe, 1979 Atkins 2004). According to Rowe (1979), fairy tales perpetuate the patriarchal status quo by making female subordination seem a romantically desirable, indeed and ineluctable fate.2.2 Gender StereotypesGender stereotypes are also an important key term in this study as the main objective of this research is to explore the effect of fairy tales on the formation of gender stereotype

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