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Comparative Essay Of Little Red Riding Hood

1584 words - 6 pages

Readers understand the warnings of adolescence in Perrault's, France's, and Jordan's version of Little Red Riding HoodThe timeless old tale of a little girl meeting a wolf on her way to granny's house has been passed down through oral tradition from one generation to the next. Little Red Riding Hood has existed for centuries and has even predated the first literary version put forward by Charles Perrault in 1697. Since then, this story is continually being told to children everywhere. We have also seen many film adaptations including Jordan and Carter's controversial "The Company of Wolves." In comparing the sexual and moral aspects of Perrault's "Little Red Riding Hood," France's "The False Grandmother," and Jordan's "The Company of Wolves, readers are left with an understanding that there are many warnings that one should consider when entering adolescence.Sexuality plays a significant role in many versions of Little Red Riding Hood. There are three types of versions that will be analyzed: an oral story, a written interpretation, and lastly a film adaptation. The first to be analyzed is an oral story. "Oral tradition is the transmission of cultural items from one member of a culture to another, or others. Those items are heard, stored in memory, and when appropriate, recalled at the moment of subsequent transmission." (Rosenberg 31). In France's oral story, there are hints as to the role that sexuality plays. For example, the wolf is presented as a sexual, "wicked" creature:"'You must be Do come to bed with me. And the girl climbed into bed with the wolf" (Ashlimen 9-10).Oral stories are intended to be dramatic, told with elaborate physical movements and strong emotions. As such, the storyteller would stress certain parts of this story, particularly the sexual aspect so as to reveal the moral and also to entertain the audience. "The best stories, oral as well as written... say the least while evoking the most" There is little to be said in terms of more direct implications of sexuality, thus dialogue plays a significant role in oral storytelling. The dialogue of the wolf would have a particular emphasis in that the storyteller works to reveal how a man would seduce a young innocent girl. The effect of oral storytelling is that the storyteller has the ability to put emphasis on important parts of the story, both physically and vocally.In Perrault's literary version of this folktale, the role of sexuality is intended to be understood by the female children listening to the story. He intentionally portrays the wolf as a sexual, devious creature and little Red Riding Hood as an innocent curious girl:"'...come into bed with me.' Little Red Riding Hood took off her clothes and got into bed. She was greatly amazed to see how her grandmother looked in her nightclothes, and said to her, Grandmother, what big arms you have! ... what big legs you have! ... what big ears you have! ... what big eyes you have! ... what big teeth you have got!"In this story,...

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