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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 Details

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.

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Satire at its best April 10 2004
By Charles Ashbacher TOP 1000 REVIEWER
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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5.0 out of 5 stars Finally, fairy tales that aren't grim Nov. 2 2003
This has become my favorite volume of fairy tales ever produced! While the Brothers Grimm, Ellen Datlow and even Disney have all made gallant attempts at telling these classic morality stories, no one can hold a candle to James Finn Garner's brilliant masterpiece.
The fairytales presented in this volume include Little Red Riding Hood, The Emperor's New Clothes, The Three Little Pigs, Rumplestiltskin, The Three Codependent Goats Gruff, Rapunzel, Cinderella, Goldilocks, Snow White, Chicken Little, The Frog Prince, Jack and the Beanstalk, and the Pied Piper of Hamlin.
While all the stories are wonderful, Cinderella and the Frog Prince stand out and are my favorites. Read these two first!
While these stories are great if you just curl up and read them by yourself, they're even better when read aloud with a big group of your friends! But whatever you do, don't read these right before bedtime as the title suggests. You'll be laughing to hard to ever get to sleep.
These stories are suitable for children, but even more fun for adults. This book gets my highest recommendations.
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Heard and enjoyed the taped version of James Finn Garner's
compilation of classic bedtime stories, retold in a manner that
is positive and self-esteem building to women, minorities, the
hearing impaired, the sight impaired, the differently-abled, gays, the third word, trees, shrubs, bushes, anorexics, bulimics, those in recovery, and spotted owls.
In the unlikely possibility that I left some groups out, I'm sure you will catch them if you listen and/or read the work. And doing so will help the author, who is to be commended for
pledging "his proceeds . . . to Native American reparations
in the form of casino trips."
To give a feel for the material, all you need to do is
check out the following from the first paragraph of the first story:
There once was a young person named Red Riding Hood who
lived with her mother on the edge of a large wood. One day
her mother asked her to take a basket of fresh fruit and
mineral water to her grandmother's house--not because
this was woman's work, mind you, but because the deed was
generous and helped engender a feeling of community.
Furthermore, her grandmother was not sick, but rather was in full physical and mental health and was fully capable of taking
care of herself as a mature adult.
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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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