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Politically Correct Bedtime Stories [Hardcover]

James Finn Garner
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Hardcover, July 7 1994 --  
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Book Description

July 7 1994
A whimsical adaptation of classic fairy tales and bedtime stories removes all kinds of bias and objective language from such traditional tales as ""Chicken Little,"" ""Rapunzel,"" ""The Three Little Pigs,"" ""Cinderella,"" and many others.

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Product Description

From Amazon

James Finn Garner has taken 12 time-tested tales and retold them with the newfound sensitivity of our times. Here's a snippet from "Little Red Riding Hood":

The wolf said, "You know, my dear, it isn't safe for a little girl to walk through these woods alone."

Red Riding Hood said, "I find your sexist remark offensive in the extreme, but I will ignore it because of your traditional status as an outcast from society, the stress of which has caused you to develop your own, entirely valid, worldview. Now, if you'll excuse me, I must be on my way."

Leap into a fairy-tale world where trolls are "dirt-accomplished and odor-enhanced," witches are "kindness-impaired," and Cinderella wears a gown "woven of silk stolen from unsuspecting silkworms." We can only regret that Garner had to exclude "The Duckling That Was Judged on Its Personal Merits and Not on Its Physical Appearance" for space reasons.

From Publishers Weekly

In this thin book Garner proposes to create "meaningful literature that is totally free from bias and purged from the influence of its flawed cultural past." The results are extremely funny. Updated to account for modern political sensibilities, these revisionist folktales reflect wit and an engaging knack for irony. In "Little Red Riding Hood," Grandma exacts her feminist revenge on the woodchopper, who "assumes that womyn and wolves can't solve their own problems without a man's help." In "The Frog Prince," the princess, now an "eco-feminist warrior," discovers that her dream frog is not a prince, but a real-estate developer. In other tales, Rapunzel becomes a self-reliant coffee-house singer and the Three Little Pigs armed guerrillas, while cultural imperialists such as The Big Bad Wolf and Goldilocks get what has been coming to them for centuries. The author strikes just the right tone here: clever, with more than a touch of self-awareness. And while each of these tales is short and easily digestible, in this case quickly read does not equal quickly forgotten. After one finishes this collection, "happily ever after" will never seem quite the same.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Funny! Aug. 8 2013
By dtr
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Very funny AND thought provoking. One caveat: some censorship may be needed when reading this book to younger children unless you don't mind answering a lot of questions!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Sleep Better, Offending Nobody March 10 2013
By John M. Ford TOP 100 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
"Once upon a time in the olden days, heavy-set middle-aged men would congregate in their elitist clubs, sit in overstuffed leather chairs, smoke air-choking cigars, and pitch story ideas and plots to each other." The resulting stories have been passed down to us as the mind-polluting bedtime tales used to warp the minds of our generation.

No need to continue this travesty. James Finn Garner has edited these stories with the ruthless, post-modern sensibility of a San Francisco school board. His diligence has midwifed the thirteen stories in this book.

The stories introduce the following inspiring role models:

The young person Red Riding Hood who set off to empower her grandmother with a basket of healthful snacks, even though said grandmother was perfectly capable of taking care of herself as a mature adult.

The Emperor, who had been turned into a vain and wisdom-challenged tyrant by a lifetime of belief in the absolute legitimacy of the monarchy and in the inherent superiority of males, was sufficiently enlightened to endorse a clothing-optional lifestyle.

The three little pigs, who set up a model socialist democracy with free education, universal health care, and affordable housing for everyone. Copyright notice: Despite any imagined similarities, these pigs are completely different from any pigs George Orwell may have disrespectfully written about.

The three codependent goats gruff. `Nuff said.

Three bears, who lived together in a nuclear family, even though the nuclear family has traditionally served to enslave womyn, instill a self-righteous moralism in its members, and imprint rigid notions of heterosexualist roles onto the next generation.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Laugh out loud funny Jan. 17 2008
By Teddy
Format:Hardcover
This little book is the retelling of classic bedtime stories with modern day political correctness. It retells stories including Little Red Riding Hood, The Three Little Pigs, and Cinderella, to name a few.

Garner uses political correctness in the extreme! For example, here is an excerpt from Little Red Riding Hood:

The wolf said, "You know, my dear, it isn't safe for a little girl to walk through these woods alone."

Red Riding Hood said, "I find your sexist remark offensive in the extreme, but I will ignore it because of your traditional status as an outcast from society, the stress of which has caused you to develop your own, entirely valid, worldview. Now, if you'll excuse me, I must be on my way."

This book had me laughing out loud, sometimes with tears in my eyes. The only negative thing is that the stories do get a bit repetitive, like the original stories themselves. Therefore, it is best to savour them one at a time with space in between. I really had a lot of fun reading these silly PC stories.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Satire at its best April 11 2004
Format:Hardcover
This book is satire at its best. Garner takes thirteen classic tales for children and rewrites them using the most politically correct language possible. Jack of Jack and the Beanstalk sells his cow for beans, falling for the sales pitch: " By selling the cow, you perpetuate the cultural mythos of beef, ignoring the negative impact on our ecology and the health and social problems that arise from meat consumption." This trade finally convinces his mother that he is differently abled rather than a conceptual thinker and she goes off to join a support group.
Dialog like this had me laughing throughout the book. The pied piper now clears a trailer park by playing country music so that new development can take place. Cinderella is now admonished by her fairy godperson to avoid wearing garments that bind her into the male concept of beauty and the three billy goats are now codependent.
If you are like me and find politically correct language annoying, then read this and for a short time laugh about how it sounds when it is used to build stories.
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