Ella Hepworth Dixon - Fairy Tales From The Arabian Nights (616.0 Kb)
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Fairy tale is an English language term for a type of short narrative corresponding to the French phrase conte de f'ee, the German term M"archen, the Italian fiaba, the Polish ba's'n or the Swedish saga. Only a small number of the stories thus designated explicitly refer to fairies. Nonetheless, the stories may be distinguished from other folk narratives such as legends and traditions (which generally involve belief in the veracity of the events described) and explicitly moral tales, including beast fables. Fairy tales typica... More >>>
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Fairy tale is an English language term for a type of short narrative corresponding to the French phrase conte de f'ee, the German term M"archen, the Italian fiaba, the Polish ba's'n or the Swedish saga. Only a small number of the stories thus designated explicitly refer to fairies. Nonetheless, the stories may be distinguished from other folk narratives such as legends and traditions (which generally involve belief in the veracity of the events described) and explicitly moral tales, including beast fables. Fairy tales typically feature such folkloric characters as fairies, goblins, elves, trolls, giants or gnomes, and usually magic or enchantments. Often the story will involve a far-fetched sequence of events. In less technical contexts, the term is also used to describe something blessed with unusual happiness, as in "fairy tale ending" or "fairy tale romance" (though not all fairy tales end happily). Colloquially, a "fairy tale" or "fairy story" can also mean any far-fetched story or tall tale. In cultures where demons and witches are perceived as real, fairy tales may merge into legends, where the narrative is perceived both by teller and hearers as being grounded in historical truth. However, unlike legends and epics, they usually do not contain more than superficial references to religion and actual places, people, and events they take place once upon a time rather than in actual times. Fairy tales are found in oral and in literary form. The history of the fairy tale is particularly difficult to trace, because only the literary forms can survive. Still, the evidence of literary works at least indicates that fairy tales have existed for thousands of years, although not perhaps recognized as a genre the name "fairy tale" was first ascribed to them by Madame d'Aulnoy. Many of today's fairy tales have evolved from centuries-old stories that have appeared, with variations, in multiple cultures around the world. Fairy tales, and works derived from fairy tales, are still written today. The older fairy tales were intended for an audience of adults as well as children, but they were associated with children as early as the writings of the pr'ecieuses the Brothers Grimm titled their collection Children's and Household Tales, and the link with children has only grown stronger with time. Folklorists have classified fairy tales in various ways. Among the most notable are the Aarne-Thompson classification system and the morphological analysis of Vladimir Propp. Other folklorists have interpreted the tales' significance, but no school has been definitively established for the meaning of the tales.
Ella Nora Hepworth Dixon (1857-1932) was an English writer, novelist and editor. Her best-known work is the New Woman novel The Story of a Modern Woman, which has been reprinted in the 21st century.
Ella Hepworth Dixon was born on 27 March 1857 at Essex Villa, Queens Road, Marylebone, London. She was the seventh child in a family of eight born to the Yorkshireman William Hepworth Dixon (1821-1879) and Marian MacMahon Dixon, who came from Ireland. William was an editor, and literature and the arts were valued in their house for boys and for girls. His position also brought a circle of writers and thinkers to the house, including Geraldine Jewsbury, T. H. Huxley, Richard Francis Burton, Lord Bulwer Lytton, Sir John Everett Millais, and E. M. Ward.
Dixon received an outstanding education for a young woman at her time, studying briefly at Heidelberg, as well as painting in Paris. In 1888, she accepted Oscar Wilde's offer to become the editor of The Woman's World. She also edited the magazine The Englishwomen from 1895. Among her other works (under the canting pseudonym Margaret Wynman) was My Flirtations, described by the American bibliophile Robert Lee Wolff as "a lively and catty series of sketches of [Dixon's] beaux, including the homosexuals, whom she virtually so identifies."
The Story of a Modern Woman (1894) is described by academic Gail Marshall in the Cambridge Guide to Women's Writing in English (1999) as "a harrowing account of a woman's attempts to survive economically and emotionally when left alone after her father's death. A tale of valiant and unrewarded courage, the novel's only hope for redemption is in women's helping each other to survive in a society which is founded on the 'acquiescent feminine smile'." The Bloomsbury Dictionary of English Literature (1997) considers it "one of the most moving of the New Woman novels." It was translated into French, and also led to the nickname the "New Woman" for its author.
Literary socializing took up much of her time, but she continued to write stories and articles. One Doubtful Hour was a collection of stories, and As I Knew Them autobiographical. Her one-act play The Toy-Shop of the Heart was produced in London in 1908. She died in London on 12 January 1932 at the age of 74.