Wesleyan Institute of Lifelong Learning

Courses

Happily Ever After

Once upon a time--long, long ago--our ancestors created myths and told stories of heroes’ quests and heroines’ trials and tribulations. Thousands of these ancient threads in the fabric of fantasy and fiction were woven into folktales and literary fairy tales. While Briar Rose, a.k.a. Dornröschen, had her 100-year-long beauty sleep in the Kingdom of Magic, the Brothers Grimm produced a collection of over 200 ‘Children's and Household Tales’ in the real world of the 19th century. Many of these stories have lived happily ever after, being translated into many languages, adapted to other media, and quoted or alluded to in various contexts.

This course will focus on close readings of some of the Grimms' work, comparing it to material from other countries. Adding two more complex ‘art fairy tales’ by J.W. v. Goethe and E.T.A.Hoffmann will allow us to include a number of perspectives - literary, cultural, psychological, sociological.

Vera Grant

Five Thursdays, 4:30-6:00, Butterfield Room, Wasch Center
March 29, April 5, 12, 19, 26

Course Instructor

VERA GRANT, who was born, raised, and educated in Germany, is an adjunct professor of German Studies emerita. Teaching German language, literature and culture with emphasis on foreign language acquisition she explored radio plays, children’s literature and fairy tales. Delving more deeply into the origins and hidden meanings of fairy tales as well as researching the rapidly increasing scholarship she has shared her findings in seminars in English and German for many years.