Sunday, February 3, 2008

Russian Fairy Tale the Fiend

The Fiend is perhaps one of the darkest fairy tales around, similar to the Blue Beard motif it is the story of a girl who falls in love with the perfict boy only to find out he is an fiend when she sees him eating a corpse in the grave yard.
The Fiend then goes on to kill both her parents and eventually her, she however manages to come back to life in order to defeat him.
Russia loved ghost stories, and they where very good at creating them perhaps thanks in part to their long winters.
Its interesting to note that the girl after being reserected can't go to church for 4 years, and when her new found husband (not the fiend) makes her go to church they suffer for it.

(Read The Fairy Tale Story)

This makes this story a sort of mixing of two lessons, one is that one should get to know the person before they agree to marry them, the second is a commonality in Fairy tales in general and that is that one should listen to their wife no matter what.
Unlike many of the latter types of tales the fiend has a the characters able to recover from the horror of their predicament.
It is interesting to see how although many have argued fairy tales are sexist they are in fact rarely are, at least not necessarly against girls. In fairy tales girls and boys are both just as likely to be the villions of the story. Whats more by disobaying their wife men will end up misrable this is more evidince that fairy tales where indeed old wives tales, stories told most often by women. One cannot forget however that they where often written down and altered by men, making them an interesting story.