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Reprinting, Revising or Remodeling?

Should Ernst’s works (or any oral or literary fairy tales)  be reprinted, revised or modified to meet the needs and preferences of a twenty-first century audience? We know the re-working of fairy tales is common. When the Brothers Grimm published their first volume ofKinder- und Hausmärchen[Children and Household Tales](Grimm, 1812) containing eighty-six numbered and collected fairy and folktales they could not have foreseen the variety of adaptations of the tales two hundred years later.Hundreds of versions in different languages, audio books, cartoons, anime, horror and interactive worlds now exist.
It could be argued that Grimm’s Fairy Tales should not enjoy continuing popularity in an era where the riddle of Rumpelstiltskin’s name could be easily solved using a search engine (Gollob, 2012) but they continue to be adapted for our era. In 2012, in readiness for the two hundredyear anniversary of the publication of the Grimm’s first collection, a number of new films appeared to re-tel…
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Australian Fairy Tale Conference 2018: Gardens of Good and Evil

A garden always has a point. ―  Elizabeth Hoyt (The Raven Prince)  The garden influences the type of fairy tales, folk tales, myths that are seeded in it.

What is the point of the garden, the bush, the landscape in folktales? With my colleagues, and friends, Christine, Phillippa we took our audience down a wonderland ‘rabbit hole’ as we explored the impact of transplanting traditional tales into new natural environments: the garden, the bush, the island. With the aid of illustrations we presented a dialogue (trialogue?) that challenged and questioned if, how and why, various natural settings have impacted on the mannerisms, behaviours and appearance of characters in retold/ adapted fairy tales and mythologies.  ·What is an ‘authentic' fairy garden? ·Does the oral tradition of fairy tale gardens and forests preclude all other variations? ·How do socio-cultural factors impact on the portrayal of the natural setting?
Reilly McCarron's definition of fairy tales is a worthy starting poin…

Special Fairy Tale issue of TEXT, an open-access online journal

Congratulations to editors Rebecca-Anne Do Rozario, Nike Sulway and Belinda Calderone. 
I appreciate their editorial expertise.
Into the Bush: Australasian Fairy Tales is an intriguing and enchanting read for those researchers and lovers of fairy tales. Robyn Floyd: Fairies in the bush: The emergence of a national identity in Australian fairy tales

Early Australian fairy tales digitized in TROVE

Interpretation of text by the illustrator: contradictory positioning

Illustrations of Ernst’s assertive female characters by Dorothy Ashley do not offer the same perspective. Fang (1996) suggested that “whether intended or not, illustrations sometimes tell a slightly different or even contradictory story than the text” (p. 134). Many of the illustrations in Fairy tales from the land of the wattle by Ashley exemplify female figures in maternal, spiritual, or nurturing roles.Suggesting that illustrations are also cultural symbols that transmit meaning as effectively as written symbols, Meganck (2010) researched the portrayal of female images in children’s literature between 2000 and 2010 and applied the categories devised by Goffman (1978) in his analysis of non-verbal images of women in advertising to her study of picture book illustrations. These categories included relative size (in relation to the male), the feminine touch (caressing, nurturing), ranking and subordination.  This suggests that the illustration may communicate more about the artist and …

Reprinting early Australian fairy tales.

Should we reprint them? Or does their appeal remain fixed in the era they were written? Hart (1950) made the point that, ‘books flourish when they answer a need and die when they do not’ (285) and it is worth considering for example the fairytales of Tarella Quin whose fairy tale books were reprinted numerous times. Quin (aka Quin Daskein), published her first fairy tale, Gum Tree Brownie in 1907[1] with enlargements and variations appearing with regularity in 1918, 1925, 1934 and 1983. Her publisher was still publishing one hundred years after her first book which allowed the opportunity for re-publishing it.  It was believed that public taste indicated this book could become popular again.


However, when Gum Tree Brownie was republished as The Other Side of Nowhere: Fairy Stories of the Never Never (1983) two stories that did not suit the current socio-cultural environment were omitted. Cruelty and death are not seen as suitable topics for children’s books today - or at least not in t…

Here's an Aussie fairy king with a slouch hat and a stock whip wand.

Some children assert that there are no fairies in Australia. Wait until you read this story, and then you shall judge for yourself.  It was summer; there had been no rain for many months; hardly a blade of grass was to be seen; the little left was of the colour of stubble. The once full-flowing creek was a chain of water-holes, very muddy, and harrowed with hoof-prints. The cattle and horses made tracks through the puddles night and morning. These thirsty half-starved animals came long, weary marches over the plains to drink, plodding through the water to the other bank in their weary search for grass or anything to feed upon. The only water for miles around was the turbid and scanty supply in the creek-already fast drying up. Settlers brought their tanks on drays, sometimes a distance of ten or twelve miles, taking a whole day to travel thither and back. By day the sun was blazing, and sank to rest in the evening a fiery-red veiled in a smoky shroud. Even the moon when it shone at ni…