So, albiet delayed by a day, I would like to take this opportunity to wish “A VERY HAPPY BIRTHDAY” (belated as it is) to the one and only, inimitable – Hans Christian Anderson!
Im assuming most of you know of him, for those that dont – Im truly sad for you but I promise you know him even though you think you dont! (if you want to read about him, Ive linked his bio above)
Anderson was a Dutch writer and poet in the early 1800’s and is remembered still for being one of the most powerful fairy-tale writers in history.
Like so many other little things, fairy tales are looked at as ‘children’s stories’ but you know its what we learn from those stories, its hearing them and different aspects of them sinking in for different folks that makes them so powerful that they resonate after decades and decades.
– The Tinder Box
– The Steadfast tin soldier
– The ugly Duckling
– The little Mermaid
– The Princess and the Pea
– The Emperor’s new clothes
And to think of it today, so many of his stories like the prissy Princess who got tortured by a mere pea and the touching saga of the little ugly Duckling have not only become an integral part of most childhoods, but they have also entered our lexicon and stayed through so many changes in style, slang and expression. I think that says a lot about the mans ability as a story teller, don’t you?
But I have to say personally as much I enjoyed all his stories, I feel that his most well written and often under-rated work is The Snow Queen which I would recommend to anyone willing to give it a read.Adapted many times over the years into movies both animation and live-action, it is arguably his best work. In fact I remember some years back the Hallmark channel produced a 2-part TV movie based on it that was extremely well made and in fact was more adult then one would imagine a ‘fairy tale’ to be.
H.C. Anderson was, is and will remain for some time an understated legend through his works and I salute him as one of the first of his kind of writer, i.e., one that could create a story that at heart could be read, heard and loved by children and yet hold subtle details and themes that even adults can be moved by and learn from.
Here’s to one of a kind. Cheers..