This book, with tongue firmly in cheek, takes political correctness to the extreme by re-writing children's fables. For example, "Once there were three little pigs who lived together in mutual respect and in harmony with their environment. Using materials that were indigenous to the area, they each built a beautiful house." Delightful satire.
I am totally against political correctness and I found this book hilarious. It shows what happens when when give into all of this pc nonsense and although not all of the stories were great it's the fact that they were overly pc that made them that way. I thought the best stories were Red Riding Hood (till the end), Cinderella, Goldilocks and Rapunzel.
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. Problem was, these stories, many of which found their way into the general social consciousness, reflected the way in which these men lived and saw their world: that is, the stories were sexist, discriminatory, unfair, culturally biased, and in general, demeaning to witches, animals, goblins, and fairies everywhere. Finally, after centuries of these abusive tales, which have been handed down-unknowingly-from one male-biased generation to the next, James Finn Garner has taken it upon himself (that's right, yet another man) to enlighten and liberate these classic bedtime stories and retell them in a way that is much more in keeping with the society in which we live today.
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.
The author has seen fit to to take upon himself to enlighten and liberate centuries of abusive tales which have been handed down through many generations. These classic bedtime stories are retold in a way that is much more in keeping with the society in which we live today. They are: Little Red Riding Hood; The Emperor's New Clothes; The Three Little Pigs; Rumpelstiltskin; The Three Codependent Goats Gruff; Rapunzel; Cinderella; Goldilocks; Snow White; Chicken Little; The Frog Prince; Jack and the Beanstalk; and The Pied Piper of Hamelin.
Very slim volume - only took about an hour to read.
These are short retellings of classic fairy tales, complete with twists and sly asides, poking fun of - or maybe just paying tribute to - our 'enlightened' society. The brevity of the book is probably wise, as the joke does get repetitive after a while - but still, there are some clever turns of phrase and funny changes in plot - especially as far as punchlines. Definitely good for a few laughs.
Very silly and not exactly my cup of tea. Of course I don't care much for political correctness and I received it as a gag gift because of that. You might like it for it's sociological/political statement.
After centuries of sexist, discriminator, unfair, culturally biased tales, which have been handed down - unknowingly - from one male-biased generation to the next, Garner has taken it upon himself to enlighten and liberate these classic bedtime stories and retell them in a way that is much more in keeping with the society in which we live today.