Sanitizing Fairy Tales et al

This discussion is critical to writers/readers/children/teachers, on Kristen Lamb’s blog. I’ve participated on the issue of sanitizing what children read and I personally believe that fairy tales (as originally written) are essential to teach children about real life – not the make-believe that some publishers and Disney have fed us and our children for decades.

The comments on Kristen Lamb’s post are phenomenal and speak to the real fears that we all have regarding freedom of thought and speech in the present climate of Political Correctness and, as Kristen has pointed out, Empathetic Correctness.

Sanitizing fairy tales so that children will not be upset when the lazy, stupid, mean and bullying characters are punished, or even when the good and smart have a sad end, does not teach them to cope with the real world. Where better to learn the ‘facts of life’ than in the safety of your parents’ arms reading a story at bedtime?

Denying children this experience will only foster a future of adults who cannot cope with reality or face the hardest events life presents to all of us.

Preventing anyone from expressing their thoughts and opinions on controversial topics makes us all afraid to express ourselves. While we celebrate the brave activists in places like Burma, we are silencing our own activists because we disagree with them.

Speaking your mind should never be restricted, no matter what you have to say.

Join the conversation on WarriorWriters.




Filed under Classic Literature

2 responses to “Sanitizing Fairy Tales et al

  1. julielrobinson

    I agree totally. I refused to watch Disney’s The Little Mermaid for that very reason. Its real ending is so much more profound (and sad) and has stayed with me since reading it as a kid. I also refused to watch Disney’s Pocahantus because it is not the real story—not even the right hero.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Julie. My children loved me to read The Little Mermaid to them (the real Hans Christian Andersen tale) because I always cried so much at the end and they could comfort me. That particular story (like all true fairy tales) has very deep and critical life lessons. Disney is not the only entertainment organization changing the meaning of stories and actual history. Thank you for commenting.

      Liked by 1 person

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