List of abstracts for the IV International HCA conference - Hans Christian Andersen between children's literature and adult literature
The element of fear in H.C. Andersen's fairytales
Mmany discussions have been made regarding the nature and elements of fairytales but, most scientists avoid getting into detailed analysis of their psychological aspects.
Vladimir Propp is regarded the pioneer in the scientific field of fairytales’ morphology and he has marked that, one of the most frequent elements of fairytales and folktales in general, is evil and the fear it provokes to the heroes.
My essay derives from my personal belief that H.C. Andersen’s fairytales are different from most others since one can read not only Freudian symbolism into them but also Melanie Klein’s and Julia Kristeva’s theories apart from the very popular Jungian approach that most scientists refer to.
In these fairytales magic or specified fear by the figure of a monster or a witch -in the means that we find it in other fairytales- does not exist since the evil is very real and seems to refer directly to ones everyday angst. Themes such as poverty, social exclusion, racism dominate the plot and wicked people seem to be only the excuse for a more psychological, interior battle.
Therefore, I attempt to approach the following 6 fairytales: The Wild Swans, The Little Match Girl, The Snow Queen, The Ugly Duckling, The Steadfast Tin Soldier and the Little Mermaid, using Freud’s, Klein’s and Kristeva’s theories in order to identify the heroes’ fear, angst and its source. My aim is to discuss fear thoroughly (which is the object of the fear?) and propose my own “interpretation” based on the above theories or even make an attempt to deconstruct them.