Saturday, October 15, 2016

Article: Remembering Joseph Jacobs 100 Years On

If you don't know who Joseph Jacobs is and love fairy tales, you owe it to yourself to find out.

Herbert Cole
Fairy Gold: A Book of Old English Fairy Tales
There's a short article HERE which gives you the highlights about the Australian born, Jewish folklorist, in love with English fairy tales.

Here's an excerpt:
...the stories this Jewish man collected and popularized bear such familiar names as “Jack and the Beanstalk,” “The Three Little Pigs,” “Lazy Jack,” “The Three Sillies” and “Tom Thumb”—every one of them a classic English fairy tale. 
John Batten - More English Fairy Tales
... throughout his life, it was the English “fairy tale” that was his core interest. All the collections compiled by Jacobs were accompanied by detailed notes on the origin and meaning of the stories, and it is in those notes and observations that one gains insights into the creative process that made these stories memorable. First, Jacobs points out the obvious: few of the stories in the collections involve fairies. Rather, Jacobs chose that term to include all stories in which “something extraordinary… [occurs].” It will typically involve giants, dwarfs, fairies and talking animals. It will also include, in Jacobs’ words, “tales in which what is extraordinary is the stupidity of some of the actors.” For Jacobs to include a story in his collection it had to combine a sense of humor and dramatic power.
You can read the whole article HERE.

[Joseph Jacobs was born in Sydney, Australia, August 29, 1854. He died January 30th, 1916 in Yonkers, New York, USA.]
John Batten - More English Fairy Tales

1 comment:

  1. The Grimms are good. Perrault is fine. Afanasyev's collection is most impressive. But when it comes to the different fairy tale collectors/writers, it's Jacobs that I find the most fun to read. Of course, it might be because Jacobs wrote his books with an eye towards entertaining instead of just preserving culture.