Fairy Tales

In the first three classes on fairy tales, you have been assigned to read one Asian story in addition to the European tales. Choose one of the heroines from this rubric (Little Red Riding Hood, Cinderella, or Sleeping Beauty) and compare the Asian story assigned for that class to one of the European stories. For example, if you choose Little Red Riding Hood, compare The Tale of the Tiger Woman to either The Story of the Grandmother or to Little Red Cap. If you choose Cinderella, Yeh-hsien to Grimms Cinderella. If Sleeping Beauty, compare The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter to either Perrault or Basile.

What key differences do you note in the Asian tale? Contrast the central character in the two tales you choose. How are their journeys different? How does that affect the moral of the story, if there is one?

Karen Gocsik, the scholar who created your peer review assignment, suggests the following for writing a good comparison paper:

Whatever strategy you choose, remember: for a compare/contrast paper to be effective, the writer must be sure to limit the comparison to the most salient points. A paper that articulates carefully a few important comparisons or contrasts and analyzes their significance will fare much better than a paper that simply presents a laundry list of similarities and differences with no analysis or commentary (emphasis added, Gocsik, Writing About World Literature, 23).

Follow this advice. Do not list bunch of differences but choose and focus on the most important points, offering nuanced analyses of key passages. You may choose to focus more on the Asian tale than the European ones.

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