This work is about the analysis and comparison of two literary works: a short story, and a poem. The short story is titled “ Little Snow-White” by The Brothers Grimm, translated by Margaret Taylor in 1884. On the other hand, the poem is titled “ Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” by Anne Sextons. Both the works describe a similar event: the story of a little princess.
In summary, both the poem and the short story talk about a little princess. In the short story, the little princess is referred to as the “ Little Snow-White.” This name she got from her late Queen mother who named her so because she “ was as white as snow, and as red as blood, and her hair was as black as ebony.” Upon the death of the little princess’ mother, her stepmother became very jealous Snow White’s beauty. This made the wicked stepmother to order for the killing of the little snow white. However, the hired hunter could not kill the seven-year-old girl. Because of her beauty, the hunter sympathized with her. The hunter left her in the forest, all by herself, bearing in mind that she would be killed by the wild beasts. While in the forest, running for her life, the young princess found a little cottage where she fell asleep in the seventh bed. Later, the seven dwarfs that stayed there, came back home and allowed the little girl to put up with them. Snow White’s stepmother, the wicked Queen, came so that she would kill Snow White, when the dwarfs left. This attempt, just as the previous attempts, did not work. Snow White was just forced into a long sleep by the queen. Finally, the handsome prince arrives, finds Snow White, kisses her, and ridding away with her on the horse. Both of them got married. During the wedding, they invited the wicked Queen, where “ she was forced to put on the red-hot shoes, and dance until she dropped down dead.”
In both the works, the authors have succeeded in using the literary devices. Simplicity of the stories makes it possible for the intended audience (the children) to understand properly the meanings of the stories and draw some moral lessons. Repetition has been used in most cases to lay emphasis on important issues and at the same time create a rhythm. The most common repetition in both works is the use of seven. Consider the examples below from the short story. “ when she was seven years old”, “ seven little plates… seven little knives and forks, and seven little mugs”, “ seven dwarfs”, “ seven candles”, and “ seven mountains.” In the poem, the use and repetition of seven is also evident. Examples include, “ On the seventh week”, “ the seventh mountain”, “ seven beds, seven chairs, seven forks and seven chamber pots”, “ seven chicken livers, “ the seven dwarfs”, and “ the seven mountains”. Figurative language has been successfully used in both cases. We can identify various instances when metaphor, simile, hyperbole, and personification are used.
Being that the two literary works talk about the same story, there are numerous similarities. The themes, in both cases, are similar. The dominant themes are hate, innocence, and death. The characters are also similar in both cases. The Protagonist is the little princes or the Snow White, who is at the center of the story while the antagonist is the jealous stepmother. In the plot, we can identify events which occur as results of other events, like the jealousy of the stepmother developing as a result of the outstanding beauty of the Snow White, the stepmother married as a result of the death of Snow White’s mother, etc. this is what we call the casualty. Suspense has been greatly applied.
Suspense can be described as a sense of worry that is established by the author. Examples of the application of suspense includes when the hunter leaves the young girl in the forest. The reader gets worried about what might happen to her. When the girl eats the poisonous fruit from the wicked stepmother, the reader is worried about the outcome. The reader is kept worried for a very long time until the girl gets well. Conflict can also be seen at the very center of the story. The stories depict a great struggle between the two opposing forces. The stepmother can not allow the little princes to live, simply because Snow White threatens her beauty. She makes all the attempts so as to kill Snow White.
However, during the wedding of Snow White, they scheme so as to kill the wicked woman, which they do perfectly by inviting her and forcing her to put on the red-hot shoes and dance. We can also depict the use of irony in both the works. After the wicked Queen ordered for the death of Snow White, she definitely knew that she was the most beautiful. However, when she asks the magic mirror, she gets an ironical result. How could Snow White still be the most beautiful when she had been killed? This is ironical indeed! Even after poisoning the little princess and being certain that she is dead, it’s still ironical that the woman gets a different message from the magic mirror. Indeed the two authors have succeeded.
Anne Sexton, “ Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” Retrieved from http://www. poets. org/viewmedia. php/prmMID/15300
The Brothers Grimm, “ Little Snow-White” Retrieved from
http://classiclit. about. com/library/bl-etexts/grimm/bl-grimm-snowwhite. htm
Anderson, H, C, The Complete Illustrated Stories of Hans Christian Andersen Chancellor Press London, 1983.
Jung C, G. ‘ The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche”, The Collected Works.. Vol’ 8. Routledge London, 1960.