Opposites with Fairy Tales

I most certainly agree with Tatar when she says that Bluebeard and Beauty and the Beast are opposite.

I believe that Bluebeard (referring to the Perrault story) is a harsh and scary look at what marriage is, or was thought of at the time to be like.  I believe, more for women, that marriage was considered to be scary and very much dreaded.  It would have to be scary just marrying someone who might as well have been a complete stranger!  I for one would be very concerned to be told that there was one certain room in the house that I was not allowed to go enter, especially if I was going to be severely punished for it!  The idea I think this presents is that once women are married, their husbands may do with them as they please.  I can imagine this would be rather horrifying for a woman.

Beauty and the Beast, on the other hand (referring to the Beaumont story) starts out dreary and a little scary; with Beauty’s father losing all his money, and the other two sisters being absolutely hateful towards her.  Unlike in Bluebeard, Beauty selflessly offers to go and live at the Beast’s castle in place of her father.  Instead of feeling trapped in the castle, Beauty has a rather lovely time during her stay, and grows to like and eventually love the Beast.

The most obvious difference between these two stories is that Beauty and the Beast ends well.  Beauty and the Beast (turned Prince) end up living together and happy at the end of their story, while the heroine in Bluebeard is left to try and recover from the horror of the experience of her first marriage.  Beauty and the Beast also shows of how love can change a person, and how it can obviously affect the way you see that person.  There was certainly no mention of anything to do with love in Bluebeard.

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One response to “Opposites with Fairy Tales

  1. vrosengrant20

    I must agree with how the stories are opposites, especially by giving the worst possibility in Bluebeard and the best possibility in Beauty and the Beast. More than that is how the Bluebeard husband was charming, while the Beast is ugly and uncouth. Yet, in a superficial sense, the husbands treated their wives similarly by lavishing them with everything they had while only giving them one limitation, Bluebeard demanded she not enter one room and the Beast demanded that she return to him. This furthers a sense of horror for women by how it can be near impossible to judge just who their husband when first confronted with them, even if that time takes place after their wedding.

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