Tuesday, January 24, 2006

The Beginning

Well, I begin.

Today I read a review of Angela Carter's anthology of fairy tales in the TLS (Times Literary Supplement). I learned that the word "tale" is often synomous with "lie" or "falsehood," which made me think of "A Lie of Two Cities." Russian narrators end their tales, "The tale is over; I cannot lie any more." The reviewer reminds that fairy tales were not meant for children and were very dark with brutality and grief. These stories were often told over generations, "old wives' tales" and the women are broken, the heroines wounded - but in the narratives they undergo some sort of transformation. The reviewer does not compare Carter's collection favorably to the Grimm's or Anderson, saying simply that the stories here are not art. A.S. Byatt said of Anderson that he had "designs on the reader" and in concocting his fables his designs entice the reader, presumably in ways the stories here do not. To read the full review click here.

So do the tales commence....??


Anneseye said...

Thanks for your insights, Cass. In Portuguese, the words tale (conto) and lie (mentira) are also synonomous. And Contos de Fadas in Portuguese means 'stories of fiction.'

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