I grew up with Disney.
Princesses, princes, evil queens and mad sorcerers. Not to mention fathers with motherless children who tried to fix the situation with new mothers. (Disney taught me this rarely works out.) As the years went by we added more studios and cable channels, but the basic stories were all based on the same sources. Whether you know it or not Hans Christian Andersen and the brother’s Grimm raised us, but I’m almost certain you don’t know the original stories (and neither do your children).
In the interest of reading to my daughter because I enjoy reading, want her to read, and have been guilted by mommy blogs everywhere that TV is evil, I decided to try some of the classics. And they’re awful – especially if you’re reading to a girl and hoping to raise a strong, independent woman. Don’t misunderstand me – I have nothing against royalty, real, imagined or historical, and I love a happy ending. However, enforced servitude and “rescue by marriage” are not what I want to endorse as a happy ending. At least Disney has updated their female characters to reflect (most) modern values.
So I have embarked on a mission of sorts to re-examine these beloved classics and hopefully give them more depth, or humor, or at least more girl power. I hope you like my efforts and I invite you to share your insights!