Watching violent fairy-tales is not beneficial for children.
Fairy tales are an innocent amusement for children. People, who I know think so, but mainly parents, that fairytales are purely innocent. That is why they have no objections when their children are watching them on the TV. One reason, why parents let their children watching them is that they think fairy-tales are educative. Parents want their children the best, to be prepared for life, that is why they want to give their children the right education through fairy-tales. This mission of fairy-tales sometimes force children to adjust and accept the ethnical rule or “sometimes it may force them to choose a political attitude”. (Erdogan, F., 2005). According to Erdogan, the author of the fairy-tale has an opinion and he wants to make children to accept it. (Library Science Department, 2005). Erdogan also claims, that fairy-tales for children with no intention to shape children are very few. (Library Science Department, 2005)
The most influential fairy-tales were made during communism. Leaders of Communist Party in Soviet Union ordered, just a few months after the October Revolution, that fairy-tales must be adjusted according to the communist ideology (Hellman, B., n.d.). The first and very famous author of such ‘influential’ fairy-tales was Maxim Gorkij. His stories, which were about exaggerating a man skills and his ability, to change the world with the use of revolution. Also many writers, according to Hellman, supported the war and strengthen the faith and optimism of war. These authors were calling up children to taking part in the fighting.
Today, there is a huge amount of various fairy-tales on TV. It is enough to switch on the TV and we can see a lot of ‘non-sense’ fairy tales. Sometimes even I, because I like them, just stare on the TV and think, how is it possible to let such fairy tales be broadcast! The best example is the fairy tale – The Tree Friends. There are brutal scenes, even for an adult, not for children. But not only this fairy-tale is considered to be unsuitable for children.
Many fairy tales for children are very violent and brutal; in spite of the fact that adult people do not think so, because they meet with such violent scenes almost every day. But for little children, who do not know much about life may think, that they should imitate their superheroes and the life will be much funnier, what is not true. They may cause big troubles not just to themselves, but also to their friends or parents.
A child watching a Superman, would like to try the feeling of flying and may jump out of the window. Or when they see a fairy-tale, where a little child finds a chocolate at the highest shelf of a bookcase, they may get a feeling that also at the top of their bookcase is a chocolate. Finally, they fall down and hurt themselves.
Many psychologists and psychoanalytic critics have already expressed their concern about children’s literature and today’s modern fairy tales. They say that such fairy-tales cause disturbance in social behaviour of children. For example books for girls written in patriarchal society in the 19th century, where the women’s characteristics are endurance, discretion, submission, patience, cleanliness and their main role are domestic work and being always available is in contrast with the present equal society. (Coe, K., Palmer, C., Aiken, N.D., Cassidy, C., 2005). Also feminists criticize these old fairy-tales because of submissional role of women in such fairy-tales.
Little girls may think, that a real woman should be like this.
Also in today’s fairy tales, such as Tom and Jerry, are scenes that in case of imitation would cause serious injuries. Scenes like dropping the hammer on another’s head, cutting the other in half or putting poison to the other’s food. Actually, there were complaints about an episode of Tom and Jerry from some viewers, in which Tom wanted to attract a female cat with a cigarette. (Kelly, L., 2006). This is not exactly the right example for our children.
Little children, who do not know much about the ‘real world’ may think, that some creatures are real. In many fairy-tales are as the main characters dragons, which eat princesses, trolls, and various monsters. During the night they cannot fall asleep, because of the fear that a creature jumps up from underneath of their bed. Is the children’s fear worth it? Or the biggest lie to the children is about Santa Claus. Every year are million of children expecting his arrival, and as many are disappointed about his ‘non-existence’ when they get a glimpse of their father’s costume.
But wait a minute. If fairy-tales have so many con’s and arguments that they are not beneficial for children, what is the purpose of fairy-tales? Not all fairy-tales are brutal or violent. The best instances are traditional fairy-tales. Those fairy-tales are pleasant, but mainly useful. (Coe, K., Palmer, C., Aiken, N.D., Cassidy, C., 2005). Parents also prefer fairy tales with an instruction. Such as in the Aesop’s fable The lion and the mouse. The hungry lion finally released the innocent little mouse. In return, the little mouse later chews through the net, in which the lion was captured, so the mouse saved his life. Little children can learn the respect toward the others. The another thing, what children can learn from fairy-tales is that also in the real life are bad people, who want to harm them and that they need to be careful of such people.
Also a very interesting case happened to people hit by tsunami of December 26, 2004 whom were told a fairy tale about the wave that eats people. There was an old legend, which was told by grandparents about the wave. People who knew this legend ran to hills, because their forefathers told them to do that. Many people were saved because of the story told by their ancestors. (Coe, K., Palmer, C., Aiken, N.D., Cassidy, C., 2005).
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Watching violent fairy tales is not beneficial for children
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