A newly translated collection of subversive French fairy tales by writers from the Belle poque
The wolf is tricked by Red Riding Hood into strangling her grandmother and is subsequently arrested. Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella do not live happily ever after. And the fairies are saucy, angry, and capricious. Fairy Tales for the Disillusioned collects thirty-six tales, most newly translated, by writers associated with the decadent literary movement that flourished in late nineteenth-century France. These enchanting yet troubling stories reflect the concerns and fascinations of a time of great political, social, and cultural change. Recasting well-known favorites from classic French fairy tales, as well as Arthurian legends and English and German tales, these decadent fairy tales feature perverse settings and disillusioned perspectives, underlining such themes as the decline of civilization, the degeneration of magic and the unreal, gender confusion, and the incursion of the industrial. Complete with an informative introduction, biographical notes for each author, and explanatory notes throughout, these subversive tales will entertain and startle even the most disenchanted readers.