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Fairy Tales, Mothers in
Home Tarrant Margaret W. Mother Goose Nursery Tales.
Tarrant Margaret W. Save for Later. About this Item Lge 4to. With sixteen full page colour plates by Margaret Tarrant plus numerous other text drawings.
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Out of sensitivity, perhaps, or just a more comprehensible character arc, the Grimms altered the beginning of the story between their editions, and what we most commonly encounter now is the version they published in , in which the innocent mother dies after giving birth, the king remarries, and neither Snow White nor the reader must contend with the disturbing notion that a mother would murder her own little girl simply because of her looks.
In short, the wicked stepmother, one of the most notorious antagonists in the history of human stories, was the result of an edit.
I take comfort in the fact that, in the fairy tale world, you will meet so many versions of your own self—like seeing the future. But it also makes me fear the versions of myself that I have met only briefly, on days when I'm not the person I would want my still-hypothetical children to recognize.
Mother Goose - Wikipedia
Poor Bruno was not without his own many-faceted persona; his book won him some of the most coveted accolades in publishing, and his legacy as a survivor of the Holocaust and as an educator of troubled children earned him decades of respect. But he killed himself in after a long struggle with depression, and valid accusations of child abuse, plagiarism, and false credentials followed closely on the heels of his death.
What strange, disconnected darkness would I dwell in until then? What kind of mother will I be? Bullied and anti-social as a child, I was inadvertently conditioned to believe myself cold and dark-minded, and that impression has come back to haunt me time and time again over the years as I consider the hypotheticals: How many days out of each week will I be the saint? How many hours out of each day will I be the stepmother?
When I take our dog, Trudy, for a walk and she dawdles, smelling flowers like the bull Ferdinand, I jerk on her leash and swear through my teeth, and I wonder whether our peeping neighbors think of me as a cruel woman who would surely pull and snap at a brood of kids just the same way. At work and at home, I battle with the sudden drops in mood that accompany a day or two of forgetting to take my anxiety medication, a medication that I might have to wean myself off of in order to carry and feed a child the way my body was designed to do.
Again, horror and fairy tales intertwine, and what it means to be a woman, a wife, and a mother is a beating heart caught in the branches. When a good mother becomes bad, she has become an unnatural terror.