Why & How We Bring Faërie Forward: an exploration of intermediality in modern western retellings of fairy tales & folklore

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University of New Brunswick


Storytelling is an integral part of the human experience and has been since the days of our prehistoric ancestors who wove tales orally by the fireside. Storytelling brings people together, teaches lessons through immersion into unfamiliar scenarios, and reflects a culture’s beliefs and values either to affirm or challenge them. The ability to tell stories, to create fictional worlds in which the imagination can explore, is what sets humanity apart from other animals. This work explores why, and how, western culture tells the same fairy tales repeatedly, regardless of how much time passes and how much western society grows. Fairy tales remain relevant because they play upon basic human fears and desires, and they can be – and are – retold countless times in countless ways because they are full of intermedial motifs.