Sunday, February 3, 2008

Reading Rapunzel

If reading a fairy tale with pen in hand sounds clunky, I encourage you to first read Rapunzel out loud for the sheer pleasure of it. Then print out a copy and try the clunky approach. This fairy tale is remarkable in many ways that I think are worthwhile noting in a systematic way. Pagan and Christian elements, fantastic twists and turns and references to a long forgotten cultural history make this story both strange and delightful. In the pre-narcissistic world of Rapunzel, the characters move around without any angst or self-consciousness. This primitivism reflects a world where things are different but yet some things are the same. With pen or marker in hand, underline any words or phrases that surprise you, details that seem unnecessary to the plot or words that seem to be markers or indicators of something else… but what? At the end of the week, I will share my list and jottings with you.

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