Red Hood Vs. The Wolf

1033 words - 5 pages

Comparison of Little Red Riding Hood Story
Morals are often used in stories to convey a message to children. Fairytales and bedtime stories were used to teach lessons that the fictional characters learned during their journeys. However, many authors differed in what they believed their readers should know. For example, "The Company of Wolves" by Angela Carter and "Little Red Riding Hood" by Charles Perrault both write new renditions of the now well-known classic Little Red Riding Hood. Their morals differ significantly from each other; Carter promotes an attitude of feminism and courage for women, and Perrault encourages women to hide rather than fight.

In Carter's story, Little Red Riding Hood is on a journey facing danger on the way to discover her women hood. Carter describes Red Riding Hood as an "unbroken egg: she is a sealed vessel" (627). This tells the readers that she is fragile and innocent. Later in the story, after pushing Red Riding Hood through a startling transformation, she knows how strong she has become to stand up to the wolf. Carter writes, "What big teeth you have! .. . The girl burst out laughing; she knew she was nobody's meat" (631). This changes seduction from a terrible and shameful thing that girls must fear into a triumph. After she shows the wolf who is in control of the situation, she lies with him in the grandmother's bed. Carter writes, "Sweet and sound she sleeps in granny's between the paws of the tender wolf" (631). This shows that the girl is no longer the victim but has power in the relationship; although he is still a wolf, she has tamed him. Carter encourages women to embrace and conquer the wolf, an attitude that is both very modern and feminist and would doubtless have shocked Perrault and his audience.

In Carter's story, the Wolf is the representation of men and their deep desire for women. Early in the story, Carter describes the wolf as a "carnivore incarnate and he's as cunning as he is ferocious; once he's had a taste of flesh, then nothing else will do" (624). The real message being told here is men are sexual predators and hunt for flesh like wolves do. Later in the story, the wolf arrives at the grandmother's house before Red Riding Hood as he planned so he could devour the grandmother and waits for Red Riding Hood. Carter writes, "When he had finished with her the wooden chests in which he found a clean pair of sheets" (629). Carter makes it sound like a reference to sex, in which she suggests to the audience that this is all men want. The reason why Carter tells her audience that men are like wolves is that when it comes to women, men have a craving for lust.

In Perrault's story Little Red Riding Hood, she is naive and unaware of the dangers in the world, which gets her eaten by the Wolf in the end. Early in the story, Perrault describes Red Riding Hood as a "little country girl, the prettiest creature who was ever seen" (61...

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