Critique of “ Cinderella: Not So Morally Superior” Author: Elisabeth Panttaja In The essay Cinderella: Not So Morally Superior by Elisabeth Panttaja, the author analyzes the classic fairy tale that most of us have grown up knowing of Cinderella. The author’s analysis is a bit abrupt and right to the point, but also cleverly stated. The authors essay is about Cinderella being crafty, and not the normal perception of Cinderella being a princess who is virtuous and patient. It is also described in the essay that Cinderella may not be as motherless as it seems in the classic fairy tale.
We think to assume that because she has magical powers looking over her that she is also of hierarchy morally. It is an example of the complexity in what is portrayed as a simple story. A story about good Vs. Evil, and good always overcomes. The author starts the essay by talking about the opening scene in the story. The author tells that Cinderella is not so much motherless but actually very well mothered. In the essay it’s examined when Cinderella plants a twig on her deceased mother’s grave, and then the twig grows and becomes a hazel tree, then becomes enlivened with enchanted birds.
The hazel tree grows and gives magic to Cinderella as promised and helps her to become married. The author explains that the two mothers (good and evil) are actually very much similar. They are both willing to do whatever it takes to make sure their daughters are well. Also it is examined how Cinderella is in competition for the prince. Rather than sweeping the prince off his feet with Cinderella’s good looks and great charm, that is all overlooked because Cinderella is under the power of magic, and the clothing that her mother (the enchanted hazel tree) provided for her.
Her clothing has special magical powers and the Prince is in love with Cinderella, but for all the wrong reasons. In factuality, in the Grimms version of the story Cinderella, Cinderella is deformed. The clothes transform a deformed body into a marriageable woman. As the prince is falling in love with Cinderella, the mother (the enchanted hazel tree) is also accomplishing her goals by defeating her enemies using Cinderella. By Cinderella marrying the prince, that means the two stepsisters are not, now the mother of Cinderella is taking revenge through he magical powers she withholds. The author explains that the story is not so much about Cinderella but the success of Cinderella marrying the prince is through the magic of the mother. I feel that this is a very well written essay. It gives a behind the scene look of this classic fairy tale. Not only does she state her position on the story, but also regurgitates it and paints a picture well for the reader. I can agree that most Cinderella stories claim that the mother of Cinderella is absent, when in fact she is very much present.
Like the author describes the mother helps Cinderella along the way by keeping her promise and is present when Cinderella plants the twig on her mother’s grave and becomes a magical hazel tree. The moral of the story is not so happy when you think about how Cinderella is basically cheating by having magical powers help her overcome all of the negative situations that come her way. Luckily young children will most likely not pick up on that, and if not for this essay I really may not have noticed the factuality of the morals within the story.
In conclusion Cinderella is not so morally superior. When dissecting the classic fairy tale there are many flaws that Cinderella has. But also with the help of Panttaja, it is evident how this story remains a classic but with a “ hush-hush” to the children who love this fairy tale. For those of us dissecting this essay it is apparent that Cinderella’s morals need reexamining, only true love can be found with magical powers that make us irresistible and uncontainable… Supposedly.