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Literary Theory Assignment

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Parul Razdan

on 17 September 2012

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Transcript of Literary Theory Assignment

The Brave Tin Soldier: A Brief Summary




But of the lady, only remains the burnt tinsel rose. 25-tin soldiers in their
red and blue uniform but one of
these soldiers only have one leg
because the toymaker ran out of tin. Notices a pretty paper lady,
a ballet dancer,
at the entrance of the castle.
Falls in love because he thinks she only has one leg, like him. Little black goblin warns him that he shouldn't wish for something that he can't have. The tin soldier ignores him. The children place the tin soldier near a window when a gust of wind ( or possibly the goblin) sends him into a terrible fall towards the ground. The little boy and his maid go to find him but the soldier is too proud to call for help. It starts to rain heavily and two boys notice the soldier. They put him in the paper boat they make and send him sailing down the gutter. The soldier trembles with fear but remains firm with his musket. He is chased by a water rat and goes down a waterfall. His boat deteriorates and he sinks, thinking of his lady love. Suddenly he is swallowed by a fish. The fish is caught and cut and he is brought back to the children. He is so happy to see his love again that he nearly cries. They silently gaze at each other. The children want to hear of his adventures.
But the soldier doesn't want to talk since he isn't proud at all. Suddenly, the little boy throws the soldier into the stove.
The colours of his uniform fade, the tin soldier slowly melts.
He looks at the little lady.



All of a sudden, a gust of wind sends the paper dancer flying into the fire, right beside the tin man.
They are together at last.. The next morning, the maid realizes that the soldier had melted into the shape of a tin heart Archetype/Myths The Unique Hero and Lover "The soldiers were all exactly alike, excepting one, who had only one leg; he had been left to the last, and then there was not enough of the melted tin to finish him, so they made him to stand firmly on one leg, and this caused him to be very remarkable. "(The Brave Tin Soldier) Tin/Paper Tin is a metal, symbolizing strength and resistance (masculinity) but paper is delicate and fragile (femininity). Hence, even though he only has one leg, he puts forth the persona of a tough and brave soldier. Love at first sight " Only the tin soldier and the dancer remained in their places. She stood on tiptoe, with her legs stretched out, as firmly as he did on his one leg. He never took his eyes from her for even a moment. (The Brave Tin Soldier) " The little Black Goblin: the Villain/Shadow The little black goblin symbolizes the evil that will hinder the tin soldier from uniting with his love. Since he often blames the goblin for his troubles, we can assume that the goblin is actually a shadow of the tin soldier's psyche. He represents the tin soldier's deepest insecurities and weaknesses. Also, shadows are dark and haunting and so is the whole concept of a liitle black goblin that reminds you of your emotional, physical and societal insecurity. The Victim The tin soldier is almost helpless in most situations, he is a victim. Not only that, he often underestimates himself and settles for less because he himself does not feel compete or worthy with only one leg. His shadow is of a man with low self esteem that constantly doubts his capabilities because of physical shortcomings. However, since he is a hero as well, he cannot show the fear that he is experiencing throughout his quest. The Fish The fish often symbolizes good luck. It is almost as if the fish protected the tin soldier and sacrificed it's life for him to return back to the little lady. The Children Children are considered a blessing in life, a sign of the happiness that is to follow. Hence, the innocent, and unknowing children foreshadow an ending that will result in the tin soldier uniting with his lady. Even though, the lives of the tin soldier and his dancer end physically, this many mark a spiritual beginning of their relationship (which is further emphasized by the tin heart and the burnt tin rose) Fate and True Love Conquers All The door suddenly opened and brought in a gust of wind that reunited the lovers. His shadow fears of being separated from the little lady and he feels helpless as he is melting and losing her. This is when the archetype of fate surfaces. Similar to many fairy tales, fate eventually brings together the hero and his love, even in death.
Hence, they were united and their love triumphed over all obstacles and evils. Water, Air, Fire Water The sea's are always changing and so is the life of the tin soldier, even though he tries to uphold is tough, soldier persona. His life is transforming as he is in love and love is just like water, always evolving. However, water also symbolizes life and in the end of his rough journey in water, he was eventually rescued. Air Air is found everywhere and therefore, it brings everything together. Likewise, air also brought together the soldier and the little lady to unite in death. Hence air, similar to the other elements play the role of the supernatural guiding forces (the fate) Fire Fire represents spiritual energy, freedom, destruction and creation. Therefore, fire is a means to free both the tin soldier and the ballerina into their own spiritual world. It is a symbol and reflection of the burning passion of love that the soldier has for his little lady. Looking Through the Feminist Lens Identity? (cc) image by nuonsolarteam on Flickr Patriarchal Society “Farewell warrior! Ever brave, drifting onward to thy grave.”(T.B.T.S) —“she was also made of paper and she wore a dress of clear muslin” (T.B.T.S) Physical Strength Public and Private Domains Tin soldier, the two boys, and the rat The paper dancer, the cook and the maid Female sacrifice Brave Tin Soldier through the Psychoanalytical Lens: Transference- shift of emotions from one person to another, esp. from a patient to an analyst. •Id-> “pleasure principal”
-> seeks to avoid pain

•Superego-> “morality principal”
-> Houses judgement
-> internal sensor derived from societal control

•Ego-> “reality principal”
-> rational
-> regulates id and comes into terms with superego —“The soldiers were all exactly alike except one”. (T.B.T.S) The author reveals that he possesses a quality that makes him different from others. Perhaps he lacks something like the soldier who is missing a leg. •“During Andersen's first years in Copenhagen (1819-22), he fought desperately to gain a foothold in the theater as a ballet-dancer, actor or singer” (Online Gallery, Hans Christian Andersen)—perhaps the soldier’s desire for the paper dancer represents the authors desire to acquire a profession as a ballet dancer. The paper dancer can also be a depiction of Herald Scharff. (Online Gallery) •Andersen was never successful in attaining love therefore was never married—perhaps that is why the soldier never befriends the paper dancer. He was also unsuccessful in becoming a ballet dancer (Online Gallery, Hans Christian Andersen)—this may also be a reason that the soldier does not acquire the paper dancer. • “‘That is the wife for me...but she is too grand, and lives in a castle, while I have only a box to live in...Still I must try and make her acquaintance’” (T.B.T.S) Caught between Social Classes •The soldier also displays his desire (id), and the reason he cannot achieve it (superego). At the end he decides that trying to achieve his desire is reasonable (ego).

•The soldier also sees himself as less than the dancer. This is a lack of confidence that could have been present in Andersen as well. Superego •“‘Tin soldier,’ said the goblin, ‘don’t wish for what does not belong to you.’”( T.B.T.S) •“But he was nowhere to be seen, although once they nearly [tread] on him.” The soldier feels unseen by others. Andersen may have felt this way when he “did not receive enough recognition”. Lack of recognition •“If he had called out, ‘Here I am,’ it would have been all right, but here he was too proud to cry out for help while he wore a uniform”. Due to the soldier’s pride, he was unable to save himself from going on a perilous journey. One can suggest that Andersen’s hidden pride was one of the reasons he faced many external and internal conflicts. Pride •“The tin soldier trembled; yet he remained firm; his countenance did not change; he looked straight before him, and shouldered his musket”(T.B.T.S) COMPARED TO ANDERSON “Despite many disappointments he clung to his ambition, seizing every opportunity to act, sing or dance before an audience, or to recite the poems and plays he had begun to write” (Online Gallery, Hans Christian Andersen). Andersen’s subconscious expressed through the Tin Soldier •“‘Ah, well, if the little lady were only here with me in the boat, I should not care for any darkness” (T.B.T.S) “‘Where am I going now?’ thought he. ‘This is the black goblin’s fault, I am sure’”. The soldier believes that a third person has intervened and changed the course of his life. Perhaps the goblin symbolizes the force of fate that Andersen believes took control of his life. Third Person Intervention •“...threw him into the stove...it must have been the fault of the black goblin.” (T.B.T.S) The goblin once again acts the soldier’s superego, preventing him from attaining his love. •“...the heat was very terrible, but whether is proceeded from the real fire or from the fire of love he could not tell”. (T.B.T.S) The soldier gives into his superego. •“...bright colors were faded from his uniform, but whether they had been washed off during his journey or from the effects of his own sorrow, no one could say”. (T.B.T.S) The Subconscious Forever Together This ending is a way for Andersen to change his fate and be united with all those things in life for which he had been searching. Men should be strong and brave in all circumstances.
Showing fear is a sign of weakness, as is crying and calling out for help.
The ideal woman is one who is flawless, beautiful, elegant, and pure.
You can never attain what is perfect, if you are imperfect.
Every women will ultimately take the side of a man
Certain positions are specific to women only—a cook, a maid, and a wife.
Only men are strong enough to embark on dangerous and difficult journeys Stereotypes/Beliefs Colours Red and Blue These are primary/solid colours that are the base to be able to create all the other colours. Hence, they are a symbol of power and authority over others. The Maiden "All this was very pretty, but the prettiest of all was a tiny little lady, who stood at the open door of the castle; she, also, was made of paper, and she wore a dress of clear muslin, with a narrow blue ribbon over her shoulders just like a scarf. In front of these was fixed a glittering tinsel rose, as large as her whole face." (T.B.T.S) The ballerina portrays the maiden archetype with her soft and fragile physical features, as well as the emotions that she sparks within in the tin soldier. Her persona is a symbol of purity and youth that men, like the tin soldier, desire to make theirs (by successfully fulfilling the hero's quest). The Garden " In front of the castle a number of little trees surrounded a piece of looking-glass, which was intended to represent a transparent lake." (T.B.T.S) The garden is a reflection of the fertile mother nature that is feminine, beautiful and life-giving. However, it is not easy to maintain, it requires lost of dedication and thus, the hero who will take care of this paradise must prove his diligence and ability (through a quest/journey). The Hero's Quest All Hero's often embark on a quest that includes many obstacles, such as the water rat and the fish. However, the hero's (tin soldier's) prideful persona hinders him from calling for help and thus, refusing the journey. However, after the journey is fulfilled, the hero is automatically entitled to his gift who is usually his lady love. Thank You for listening and participating! Hope you enjoyed the presentation! Website References:

Lye, John. "Psychoanalytic Theory: Terms and Concepts."Department of English Language and Literature. N.p., 30/04/2008. Web. 14 Sep 2012.
Bredsdorff, Elias. Has Christian Andersen: The Story of His Life and Work 1805-75. London: Phaidon Press Limited, 1975. eBook.
Chaquin, Greg. "A glossary of Freudian terms." . N.p., 2001. Web. 16 Sep 2012. <http://www.terrapsych.com/freud.html>.
Grischey , Janet. "Short story reviews: The Brave Tin Soldier, by Hans Christian Andersen." Helium. N.p., 28, September, 2011. Web. 16 Sep 2012. <http://www.helium.com/items/2233131-short-story-reviews-the-brave-tin-soldier-by-hans-christian-andersen>.
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William Harmon and C. Hugh Holman, A Handbook to Literature 8 ed. (1999).]—adapted from Dave Crew’s handout on Archetypal Criticism.

. "Archetypes, Myths and Characters." . Storybuilder User's Manual, 1996-1998. Web. 14 Sep 2012. <http://www.svsoft.com/Archetypes, Myths and Characters.htm>

. Google Docs. N.p., 20/09/2009. Web. 14 Sep 2012. <https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&q=cache:BTfQa35YZDYJ:central.wmrhsd.org/FACULTY_FILES/rkipp/LINK_DOCS_1015/9_20_2009_Archetypal.doc color archetype jung&hl=en&gl=ca&pid=bl&srcid=ADGEESho1fXdo9YI3D0widK0pFsrJo9TAJbwVXpkNIEqjaXunB8jB5pSZteqPUd5NyTTYNB70xSZNiY83WSLpsUxVvQHggSaeitJ8aIvrXXoLNunBMZCoXImazAo1tt1w5N7jgw5ao35&sig=AHIEtbS9af8S38jBdmgOQ2mJRu8qNXjwAQ>. Image References:

Hand in Hand. 2012. Photograph. Amy BrillWeb. 16 Sep 2012. <http://amybrill.blogspot.ca/2012/01/hand-in-hand-or-how-i-felt.html>.
Brittain, . Box of Tin Soliders. 2012. Photograph. Bridgeman Art Culture HistoryWeb. 16 Sep 2012.
<http://www.bridgemanart.com/asset/2783/Box-of-tin-soldiers-by-Brittain-1890's>

Box of Tin Soliders. 2012. Photograph. n.p. Web. 16 Sep 2012. <http://www.bridgemanart.com/asset/2783/Box-of-tin-soldiers-by-Brittain-1890's>.

Ballerina. 2012. Photograph. Inside MeWeb. 16 Sep 2012. <http://dreamworldreality.blogspot.ca/2011/08/ballerina.html.

Freud's Conception of the Mind. 2011. Photograph. Lectio Divina, or Daily SeeingsWeb. 16 Sep 2012. <http://dailylight.wordpress.com/tag/max-wertheimer/>.

2008. Photograph. Adoption.comWeb. 16 Sep 2012. <http://adoptive-parenting.adoptionblogs.com/weblogs/interests-and-gender>.

sheep, . Stars in the Christmas Tree. 2008. Photograph. Wallpapers and Mp3 Audio SongsWeb. 16 Sep 2012. <http://wowlpaper.blogspot.ca/2009/12/101-most-popular-christmas-desktop.html>.

How to make silver and gold tin stars. 2009. Photograph. Craftser.orgWeb. 16 Sep 2012.
antointedlight7, . Paper Ballerina Transformation. 2010. Photograph. Deviant ArtWeb. 16 Sep 2012. <http://anointedlight7.deviantart.com/art/Paper-Ballerina-Transformation-189134836>.

Garrido, Josie. The Brave Tin SOldier. N.d. Photograph. 500px.comWeb. 16 Sep 2012. <http://500px.com/photo/1836315>.

Orloff, Alexander. Ballerina. N.d. Photograph. The Ballerina GalleryWeb. 16 Sep 2012. <http://www.ballerinagallery.com/asylmura.htm>.

2000. Photograph. The Baldwin ProjectWeb. 16 Sep 2012. <http://www.mainlesson.com/display.php?author=scudder&book=children&story=tinsoldier&PHPSESSID=eb683d689870918c96752d8d754bb34b>.

Wind Blown Trees In Fog Olympic Peninsula, Washington. 2012. Photograph. Troy MayorWeb. 16 Sep 2012. <http://troymayr.com/gallery/art/01.php>.

A picture of the tin soldier's boat sinking in the sea . 2011. Photograph. Anne Dicksen/A Day After YesterdayWeb. 16 Sep 2012. <http://www.thedayafteryesterday.co.uk/2011/03/it-is-like-horror-movie-round-at-my.html>.

Standhaftige, Den. The Steadfast Tin Soldier. 2008. Photograph. MUBIWeb. 16 Sep 2012. <http://mubi.com/films/the-steadfast-tin-soldier>.
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Tunguska, R. Machina Ex Rose Burnt Black. 2012. Photograph. flikrWeb. 16 Sep 2012. <http://www.flickr.com/photos/tunguska_rdm/6429540771/>. The Colour Black...Further Explored The colour black and the tinsel rose: The ballerina's tinsel rose was burnt black as cinder. This color often signifies mystery and melancholy. The ballerina never spoke during the novel and thus, her feelings were never revealed. However, this tinsel rose can be considered her way of communicating her shadow to us that maybe she never actually returned the soldiers feelings and therefore, just became an unfortunate puppet of fate.
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