Stories have so much power and so does whoever controls the narrative. Each episode we will dissect and analyze these stories, their themes, and messages.
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Episode 60 - The Happy Prince
The Happy Prince is a story by Oscar Wilde. It is a timeless tale about friendship, compassion, and the transforming power of selfless love. The Happy Prince is a statue covered with gold and many fine jewels and sits overlooking the city. One day a swallow bird seeks shelter under the statue and discovers the prince is not happy, but sad. The Prince and the Swallow develop a true friendship built on love and sacrifice, but that sacrifice takes its toll. However, in another life of heavenly light and warmth, The Happy Prince and the Little Swallow are forever united.
Episode 59 - The People Could Fly (American Black Folktales)
This is a Juneteenth special episode. The story, ‘The People Could Fly’ is taken from Virginia Hamilton’s The People Could Fly: American Black Folktales, an anthology of stories originally told by African slaves and retold by generations of black American storytellers. This story is rooted in one of the ugliest events of human history. I warn you, it’s not easy to hear.
It is a fantasy tale that tells of how some enslaved Africans had wings and could fly. In order for them to escape the abuses of slavery, they began to sing magic words and their bodies lift into the sky as they fly away to freedom. It is all about the dream of freedom. For the Africans who were captured into slavery and brought to America, there was little reason for hope, but through folk tales like this one, they were able to at least imagine a day when they could become free.
Episode 58 - The Garden of Paradise (Danish fable)
This week’s story, like many of Hans Christian Andersen’s other works, is not subtle about its moral messages. ‘The Garden of Paradise’ is religious in tone and is more of a fable. There’s a formidable mother, her four sons, fairy, the garden of paradise, and a prince who we know from the moment he was given a warning he won’t listen.
Episode 57 - The Old Witch & The Two Sisters (English fairytale)
This English story is taken from the 1981 reprint of Ruth Manning Sanders’ A Book of Witches. It is a story of two thieving sisters, but one escaping the punishment because of her helpful nature. First sister seeks out employment and ends up with a lot of gold. While, the witch is just a rich old lady who gets some form of justice on an opportunistic ex-employee.
Episode 56 - The Legend of Black Mountain (Australian Aboriginal story)
The Legend of Black Mountain is Australian Aboriginal story, taken from Jean A. Ellis’ collection This is the Dreaming, is strictly speaking more legend than fairy tale but contains all the familiar ingredients. Black Mountain is actually a real place in northern Queensland. Two strong brothers build a tower with black boulders to win the girl they fancy. It’s interesting to note, though, that while most legends and fairy tales reward the hyperbolic displays of their heroes, in this story it’s what leads to their eventual destruction.
Episode 55 - The Ailpein Bird, the Stolen Princess, and the Brave Knight (Scottish Fairytale)
This week’s fairy tale is a Scottish story about a collective effort of good people to save the princess instead of one person doing it all. This is a story of unexpected complications. Even the best laid plans laid by knights and wicked kings can sometimes go spectacularly wrong. There is a princess is abducted by a wicked king, someone gets the intel, someone whisks her away from the castle, and someone comes up with the plan to get her back. It was a group effort and in the end team work wins.
Insightful yet trendy
I enjoy hearing a new tale each week, especially since I do not know many tales! Not only do I feel like I begin to break it down in similar ways as some of Vipul’s guests, but I also feel as if I’m with a group of friends exploring new ideas and ways of “dissecting” and analyzing! It’s always a treat! - Looking forward to next weeks! :)
Engaging podcast series
Vipul thoughtfully explores the undertone of old tales, keeping his audience captivated with that silky smooth voice!
Fun and thought provoking!
Really enjoyed this podcast! Every episode is a great listen. Vipul brings a fresh new perspective to old stories that were written using an even older mindset. Looking forward to more episodes!