Briar Rose Fairy Tale Genre

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In traditional fairy stories one starts with the helpless maiden, especially with Sleeping Beauty. The audience knows that she will be rescued and a happily ever after will be following it straight after. However, one intresting pattern that develops in fairytales is that the rescuer of the bewitched person has himself or herself been bewitched or persecuted. Jane Yolen uses the name Briar Rose for another name for sleeping beauty. There have been many versions of the tale, which not many people know about, and they haven't always been for little children, they were more scarier and ruder than the disney - style and were told to a wider audience.Yolen has taken the story of sleeping Beauty which is (Briar Rose) she developed the parrallel stories of two women: Becca searching for her grandmother's story, and Gemma's story in the extermination camp of chelmmo and afterwards with the partisans of Poland during WWII. We can see Gemma's retelling of Briar Rose, then, as one way she has of looking at a dreadful reality otherwise too appalling to anticipate. She could not communicate such experiences directly to her family. The fairy tale also helps her make sense of her own experiences, explaining them to herself. In her retelling, Gemma frequently uses the traditional phrases Once upon a time and lived happily ever after. But it is clear to the reader that she personalises the material in such a way as to link it with the nightmarish events of her wartime life. Two parrallel stories are developed simultaneosuly: by Gemma's whole version of the Briar Rose tale which Becca recognises to be a metaphor for gemma's life (page 17) the effects of it is that the fairy tale references seem to deepen the story of gemma's holocaust suffering's and realte them to the whole cultural tradition of good and evil, of suffering and rescue, and of seeking and eventually finding. The

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