The Twelve dancing princesses is a tale of mystery, lies, and revelations. I explore this deeply in my previous blog posts, which can be read here and here. I propose a research paper: In my paper, I will be exploring the virtues of cleverness and wisdom over physical strength and brute force. In this sense, I will be examining the hero archetype and what makes a hero. Most versions of the story imply that intelligence and open mindedness is more important than physical strength, at least in this situation. I will also be looking at the effects of tone in several different retellings. The stories are, for the most part, tonally similar, implementing a detached attitude. Sometimes, this comes off as appropriate, but other times, it is just disturbing. The story often includes horrific events described in different ways, to different ends. Even stories that are structurally and tonally similar may have a very different effect on the reader based on the events and the tone.
The princesses themselves and their role in the story, symbolically and literally, are also important to talk about. The story seems to express historical misogyny, trivializing the wants and needs of young women. At its core, the story is an attack on young women who desire freedom and will in the 17 and 1800s. . In my opinion, this is important to explore so as to gain a better understanding of the reality of gender expectations historically and how that has affected society’s development.
Okay, now that sounds like a good research paper!