|Isabel Cardigos: In and out of Enchantment: Blood Symbolism and Gender in Portuguese Fairytales.
Helsinki: Suomalainen Tiedeakatemia (Academia Scientiarum Fennica). 1996. 273 pp.
ISBN 951-41-0784-5 (hardback)
26 euros (hardback)
|The core of fairytales is the realm of enchantment. This study argues that the bloodshed associated with menstruation, defloration and childbirth natural episodes in the lifecycle of women is central to a syntax of enchantment and disenchantment that is common to all fairytales. It is a reflection on the gendered voices that have generated and contributed to the structure and symbolism of fairytales; and it takes shape along with the discussion of Portuguese versions of wide-spread tale types like AT303 (The Two Brothers),AT313 (The Girl as Helper in the Hero’s Flight) and AT516 (Faithful John), as well as through an intriguing ecotype of Snake Helper tales (AT533*), ’The Little Snake’.
ISABEL DAVID CARDIGOS was born in Lisbon, in 1942. She did her post-graduate studies at King’s College London (Department of Portuguese Studies), and both her M.A. and Ph.D. dissertations are on fairytales. Back in Portugal since 1993, she now teaches at the University of Algarve, where she has created a research centre (Centro de Estudos Ataíde Oliveira, C. E. A. O.) and an international journal (Estudos de Literatura Oral, E. L. O.), both on oral literature. The present publication is a revised version of her Ph.D. dissertation.