In this article the author offers a daringly contrasting view of the highly popular children’s story Cinderella. Contrary to the widespread belief that the story is about a motherless child who is often tortured by her stepmother and stepsisters. This article, emphasizes that Cinderella’s mother is very much present throughout the story and in fact plays a vital role in her life, as she acts as a guardian angel rescuing her daughter from various obstacles and setbacks she encounters along the way. I was very much convinced by the author’s perspective. The story unfolds with Cinderella’s mother’s dying injunction to the soon-to-be orphaned girl whereby she advises the child to be ‘good and pious’ and the Lord shall assist her. It is this advice that helps Cinderella through trying times and that helps her in overcoming her social isolation or in defeating her enemies. Also the story gives subtle hints about the mother’s presence in the form of a twig that Cinderella plants on her mother’s grave, that eventually grows into a tree, which then takes care of her. This is highly symbolic since the tree and the birds that live in it’s branches continue to look out for Cinderella and offers her solace.
Another significant point that the author raises is that Cinderella is not morally superior to the wicked stepsisters. Although I do understand the author’s perspective and motivation behind the stance, I am conflicted about the statement. Cinderella is depicted as scheming, lying, and deceiving and at times using magic, all of which are often used by the ‘evil’ powers in the story, as well. However, whereas the stepsisters carry out their evil designs in an overt fashion and with an intention to attack, at times are unprovoked, Cinderella on the other hand uses magic and scheming to defend herself. Hence although they are similar in terms of techniques of manipulations used, their motivations sets them apart, making Cinderella the pious and the good one as compared to her stepsisters.