Sunday, October 26, 2014

The Tale of Two Princesses and their Unexpected Suitors
            The Brothers Grimm tale of “The Frog King, or Iron Heinrich” has both similarities and differences when compared to the Greek tale of “Cupid and Psyche” by Lucius Apuleius. Both stories involve beautiful princesses who are paired with unusual suitors which they end up living happily ever after with. However, their experiences which they must endure for these suitors differ greatly. Both stories resemble a fairy tale story line although told from two different cultural background (Greek and German) and perspectives.

            The “Frog King” is about a fair princess who makes a promise to a frog to take him as her companionship if he retrieves her gold ball from a well. The Princess falsely agrees and presumes to run away after the frog gives her what she wants. The frog does not hesitate to hop to the castle where the king makes the lovely princess hold true to her promise made to the frog. The Princess is forced into allowing the frog to eat from her plate and carry him to her bed room so he can sleep. However, the Princess throws the frog against a wall when he threatens to tell the King that she will not allow the frog to sleep in her bed, but strangely the frog turns into a beautiful Prince with “kind and beautiful eyes.” The Princess broke the Prince’s curse which led to them getting married and living happily ever after. Even the Princes loyal servant, Heinrich, is so overjoyed by his return that the iron bands around his heart broke.  But how does this compare to the Greek story of “Cupid and Psyche?”
 The stories, although similar in some aspects, also differ through the experiences of the characters.

           
     “Cupid and Psyche” also begins by introducing the beautiful Princess Psyche who is so fair that the God Venus is jealous of her vanity. Venus sends Cupid to punish Psyche for her beauty, but a fatal mistake causes the two to be destined for each other. Psyche is given the prophecy by Apollo that she is to be wed to a “monster whom neither gods nor men can resist.” When she wonders to the top of a mountain, she finds a golden castle where her future husband resides. Although she never sees him, she loves him undeniably and continues to live with all the riches she could ever need. However, her sisters convince her to take a lamp and knife to the “monsters” room where she discovers he is cupid but injures him by dropping wax on his shoulder. As the Princesses punishment, Cupid leaves her and returns her back to her sisters. Although, the God Ceres tells Psyche to find a way to win over Venus’ forgiveness so she can again wed her love, Cupid. Psych must sort wheat (with the help from Ants), get wool from cruel ram, and retrieve beauty from Erebus in a small box. Aided through all of these journey’s, Psyche still opens the small box of “beauty” but falls into a deep sleep where she is saved by Cupid. Cupid presumes to have Jupiter talk Venus into approving their marriage, making Psyche immortal, and allowing for them to be wed and bear a child. 
      
     The two princesses, both concerned with their beauty, end their stories happily ever after by enduring three different tasks which they had to complete.  However, their journeys are only made possible with the helpers who pass through, which include the frog Prince, and Cupid who assists Psych with tasks (such as sending her helper ants) and saving her when she falls into a deep slumber. But, the two stories also have their differences, the main one being their first reactions to their future husbands. The Princess in “The Frog King” does not approve of his green sliminess and wants nothing to do with him. However, Psych has an undying love for Cupid even before she knows what he looks like. The two Princesses journeys differ in that Psyche must endure difficult tasks to win over Cupid while in the Grimm Tale, the Princess wants nothing to do with winning over the frog. But both tales end with the Princess and Prince marrying and living happily ever after. 
        

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Blog Reviews

I really enjoy the blog “In the Realm of Today.” This blog is my favorite for a multitude of reasons. For starters, the presentation and set up of the page is flawless. Every posts title is creative, includes pictures, and is organized so the viewer can easily follow the posts. Each post is detailed and covers all aspects of the question that was originally asked by Dr. Esa. The posts are organized and include specific examples from different fairy tales to back up the person’s opinion. Although I loved every post from this blog, especially the one titled “mirror, mirror…” because of its word choice and attention to detail, one of my favorite posts came from the blog Polyvore created by Emily. Her blog is also unique and eye catching in its presentation. I enjoyed her perspective on the post about rags to riches. She talks about how the tale Cinderella gave readers hope of finding their own prince and marrying into wealth and a happy life. She explains that in Cinderella, the real wealth was not the money but instead his never ending love for the Princess. She concludes with the statement that most will rise to riches through struggles and dedication which is a motif found in the real world. The blog I felt could use the most improvement was simply titled, FYS from Grimm to Disney. The page is a very neutral, dark color that includes no pictures of the fairy tales. The posts are all very short and contain less details than most of the other class blog posts. Although, all of the information is accurate, the posts could use a little more details from the fairy tales to back up their reasoning.