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Beauty and the Beast

Product Description


From eighteenth-century courtiers to Cocteau, from Freudians to prime-time TV, "Beauty and the Beast" has captured the artistic and popular imagination. Betsy Hearne brings a storyteller's verve and insight to an examination of one of western culture's most powerful and persistent myths. She explores the story's folkloristic background and then traces the modern tale from its literary shaping in the mid-1700s through its re-creations in the form of chapbook, drama, poetry, novel, picturebook, and film. Hearne contrasts Apuleius' second-century "Cupid and Psyche," a closely related tale, with Madame de Beaumont's eighteenth-century "Beauty and the Beast," published at a time when oral and literary traditions were merging. Nineteeth-century versions, affected by innovations in book production and printing, combined lavish illustrations with moral instruction, a greater divergence in narrative voice, and a heightened intention to entertain. In the twentieth century the emphasis on narrative has given way to themes of psychological complexity, a shift complemented by new media techniques, mass market distribution, and a renaissance in children's literature.

Despite the myriad variations of detail exhibited over three centuries, Hearne discovers certain underlying motifs crucial to the tale's survival in literature as well as in folklore. By tracing such structural elements as character, narrative voice, image, object, and symbol through many versions, she identifies the patterns that have sustained the story's fundamental and irrepressible appeal. This focus on the art and artifice of the tale shows that its resilience lies in a metaphorical strength more flexible than most interpretations suggest.

Generously illustrated with images from some of the many editions of "Beauty and the Beast," Hearne's book also contains an essay by Larry DeVries with a structural analysis of the folk narrative, reproductions of versions from the the eighteenth and twentieth centuries, a list of nineteenth-century printed editions of the tale, and an extensive bibliography of other versions. This lively study will appeal to a broad audience of folklorists, literary critics, children's book specialists, historians, psychologists, bibliophiles, and all who have been transformed by the reading and telling of tales.


Very Good Condition

Vendor: Eve Aguila

No. of Available Stock: 0

Maximum quantity available reached.

Book Condition Scoring

15 12-14 9-11 6-8 1-5
Brand new Pre-loved: Like new Pre-loved: Gently used Pre-loved: Acceptable Pre-loved: Well-read/Ex-library
5 4 3 2 1
Spine Smooth Minimal to no crease Slightly creased, evident that book was
read and finished
Creased, might show signs of
May be warped
Pages Untouched, no discoloration Minimal to no discoloration,
no notes or markings
Minimal to some discoloration.
Very little highlights and/or notes.
May include owner's name
Slightly tanned pages
Limited highlights and/or notes
Some pages are earmarked
Tanned pages
With highlights and/or notes
but texts are not hidden/obscured
Cover Original plastic cover and/or
book jacket is intact
Minor defects, book jacket,
and/or cover are still intact
Book jacket might be missing
The cover might be slightly creased
Cover slightly torn/folded Might be slightly creased or
discolored but still intact.

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