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The Little Mermaid

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FC: "The Little Mermaid" by: Hans Christian Andersen

1: The original "The Little Mermaid" Project by: Shelby Williamson Hannah Huntoon

2: "The Little Mermaid" was first written by the Danish poet and author Hans Christian Andersen. | The popular fairytale was first published in 1837, but has been adapted many times and has even become an animated film.

3: The original title was “Danish: Den lille havfrue,” meaning little sea woman. | Some believe that Andersen got many of his ideas for the Little Mermaid from "Undine," a story by Friedrich de la Motte Fouque.

4: The original "The Little Mermaid" is a lot like many of the other versions now a day, but with some changes. | It was originally published in 1837 as a ballet.

5: The original fairytale is about a young and innocent mermaid who wants to give up everything, including her life in the sea, to become a human with a human soul in order to fall in love with the human prince.

6: plot summary: | The Little Mermaid by Hans Christian Andersen is a story about a young mermaid girl whose father is the king of the sea. | The king has five daughters and each year, one of the daughters is allowed to go to the surface and witness the world above the sea. When the Little Mermaid turns fifteen, she is allowed to reach the surface and when she does, she falls in love with a prince she sees on a ship.

7: A huge storm hits and the Little Mermaid saves the Prince’s life by returning him to the shore. When the Prince wakes up, another girl is with him. He believes that this girl saved his life and he never saw the Little Mermaid and what she did for him. | When the Little Mermaid returns to the sea, she questions her grandmother about humans. Her grandmother tells her that mermaids live much longer but when they die, they disintegrate into sea foam. Humans live a shorter life but they have a soul that lives on in eternity.

8: One day, she visits the sea witch who offers her a potion that will give her legs and the ability to live on land, but the sea witch will take her voice and when she walks it will feel like swords are stabbing at her feet.

9: Also, if the Prince marries the Little Mermaid, she will obtain some of his soul. However, if he marries someone else, she will immediately die and turn into sea foam. | She decides to accept the potion and when she meets the Prince, he becomes attracted to her. He enjoys watching her dance although she feels great pain when she does.

10: The Prince finds out that the girl his father wants him to marry is in fact the same girl who he believes saved him from drowning, when in reality it was the Little Mermaid. The Prince marries the other girl and the Little Mermaid is heartbroken. | However, the Prince’s father is ordering him to marry a young princess. He says to the Little Mermaid that he will not marry her because he doesn’t love her.

11: The Sea Witch offers her another option that will save her life. If she kills the Prince and the blood drips on her feet, then she will return to her original life in the sea.

12: Once she reaches her opportunity to kill the Prince, she can’t find it in herself to do it. She leaps into the sea, ready to disintegrate.

13: However, she turns into a warm spirit as a reward for trying so hard to gain a soul. She lives on with the other “daughters of the air” doing good deeds in order to gain the soul she desires to have.

14: The king is in the “wise, old man” archetype because he provides an overall sense of guidance and direction. He is respected by his daughters. | The Sea Witch is in the “evil figure” archetype because she encourages the innocent Little Mermaid to give up her life and ultimately die because of the potion that the sea witch gave her. She has evil intentions. | archetypes:

15: The Little Mermaid is in the “damsel in distress” archetype because she is taken advantage of by the Sea Witch who takes essentially everything from her. | The Little Mermaid can also be in the “hero” archetype simply because she saves the Prince’s life even though she never receives the credit. | The other girl that the Prince thinks saved him is in the “temptress” archetype because she gains his love in an unfaithful way. Her beauty results in the Prince’s downfall from the point of view of the Little Mermaid because of his marriage to her.

16: theme: | The theme of The Little Mermaid is the fact that we always want what we can’t have and it’s never as good as it’s cracked up to be. The Little Mermaid so badly desired the world above the sea but once she obtains legs and that ability, it leads to her death and it was not nearly as worth it as she thought it would be.

17: motif: | An example of a motif in the story is legs and the ability to walk. The Little Mermaid so desperately desires to have a life on land apart from her life in the sea. Legs symbolize a life that she could have on land with the love of her life, the Prince.

18: impact on today's society:

19: Harry Potter: | Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire: Mermaids or "merpeople"are present in the movie when Harry completes his second task of saving his friends from the scary waters.

20: Aquamarine: | The movie is about a mermaid who is washed to shore and is attempting to find love on land.

21: Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides: | Captain Jack Sparrow encounters many mermaids on his trek to find the fountain of youth.

22: Moby-Dick: | The crew of the ship in Moby-Dick think they hear human-like cries throughout the night. Some of the men think who are superstitious think the sounds might be coming from mermaids.

23: The Little Mermaid: | The Disney animated film that is a classic movie for many children is based off of Hans Christian Andersen's work.

24: works cited: | Heiner, Heidi Anne. "SurLaLune fairtytales.com." SurLaLune Fairy Tales. Amazon.com, 28 Dec. 1998. Web. 28 Jan. 2012. . | "Hans Christian Andersen celebebrated with google doodle." Children's books:7 and under . guardian.co.uk, 2 Apr. 2010. Web. 23 Feb. 2012. . | Williams, Nathaniel. "Summary of the original 'Little Mermaid' ." local.com. entertainment guide, 2012. Web. 30 Feb. 2012. . | Fouque, Friedrich. "Book Review: 'Undine.'" The Warden's Walk. WordPress.com, 2008. Web. 30 Feb. 2012. . | Heiner, Heidi Anne. "SurLaLune fairtytales.com." SurLaLune Fairy Tales. Amazon.com, 28 Dec. 1998. Web. 28 Jan. 2012. . | Williams, Nathaniel. "Summary of the original 'Little Mermaid' ." local.com. entertainment guide, 2012. Web. 30 Feb. 2012. .

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