It’s easy to think of fairy tales as something distinctly European or antiquated. After all, many of the most famous fairy-tale collectors and writers lived hundreds of years ago in Germany (the Grimms), France (Beaumont and Perrault), or Denmark (Hans Christian Andersen.) But fairy tales can be found all over the world, including here in the United States, where they’re still being created and told today.
Folklorists Sara Cleto and Brittany Warman discuss the fairy-tale traditions and stories that can be found around the United States, including the Jack Tales of Appalachia, Black folk and fairy tales from the South, and the rise of the Disney fairy-tale empire. They also introduce some lesser-known fairy tales unfolding today and offer insights into how these supposedly “frivolous” stories profoundly permeate American culture and stay with us ever after.
Cleto and Warman are former instructors of folklore and literature at Ohio State University and co-founders of the Carterhaugh School of Folklore and the Fantastic.
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