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ERIC Number: EJ818276
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Nov
Pages: 7
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 7
ISSN: ISSN-0013-8274
"[This] Book of Odd Tales/Which Transform the Brothers Grimm": Teaching Anne Sexton's "Transformations"
Keely, Karen A.
English Journal, v98 n2 p69-75 Nov 2008
Folklorist Andrew Lang, in his Preface to his 1910 edited collection "The Lilac Fairy Book", celebrates the ongoing repetition and retelling of fairy tales, including both the cozy retelling by the family fireplace. In the century since Lang wrote these words, many authors have joined the ranks of Shakespeare and Homer in putting fairy tale characters "into new dresses," and this widespread literary adoption of culturally familiar stories makes fairy tales a rich and rewarding source for the literature classroom. In this article, the author argues for greater curricular inclusion of one such literary adopter: Anne Sexton, whose popular 1971 poetry collection "Transformations" consists of 17 reworkings of Grimms' fairy tales. In this article, she also describes how she uses Sexton's transformed fairy tales to teach students about genre conventions, authorial decisions, and literature as social commentary, and how she strengthens students' creative thinking skills. (Contains 6 notes.)
National Council of Teachers of English. 1111 West Kenyon Road, Urbana, IL 61801-1096. Tel: 877-369-6283; Tel: 217-328-3870; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A