Cinderella is a story that denotes the triumph of good over evil, at the very least. It is a fairy tale, which tilts more to the folklore side, mainly because it has been told in different forms and in various places across the world, and, most interestingly, during various eras in time.
The word ‘Cinderella’ is actually derived from the word ‘cinder’, and the protagonist female is hence named mainly because she is usually depicted as one spending all her free time amongst cinders, near the fireplace, after the day’s hard, menial work, as imposed upon her by her cruel stepmother and ugly stepsisters. While the namesake itself describes the pathetic and miserable life that this exquisitely beautiful, yet downtrodden young girl is condemned to lead in the beginning, it also juxtaposes the happy and joyous life that she is known to experience at the end of the story.
Apart from that, this very highly popular tale also includes a powerful element of magic. While the initial brands of the story include various ghostly and symbolic insinuations coming from Cinderella’s birthmother’s grave, the story was then adapted by certain great authors to depict the arrival of the girl’s own Fairy Godmother, who has been appointed the duty of taking good care of her, ensuring that she leads a good, happy and satisfactory life ahead, and, more importantly, send her to the Royal Ball, during which the handsome Prince is said to choose his wife from all those invited, so that she stands a good chance due to her seamless beauty.
The Fairy Godmother is then known to create the perfect magical effects, and turn a pumpkin into a gleaming carriage, and mice into its horses, complete with lizards and rats transformed into footmen and coachmen respectively. And of course, she alters Cinderella’s entire personality by dressing her in a stunning gown, and the famous pair of dainty little glass slippers, all of which charm the Prince with such magnetism that on witnessing this gorgeous, anonymous princess fleeing from the palace at the stroke of twelve, when the spell is destined to break as promised by the Fairy Godmother, he sends out a messenger across the kingdom, in order to find her, with the help of one of the glass slippers that she leaves behind in her great hurry. Eventually, much to her stepmother and stepsisters’ surprise, Cinderella’s foot fits the slipper perfectly, and the Prince marries her, causing her evil relatives to beg for forgiveness, and repent for mistreating her.
While you will come across innumerable genres of this popular story, the most accepted one is Perrault’s version, which is explained above. Cinderella, in the end, makes a wonderful fairy tale, to entrance little girls and allow them to dream in the same way about their own handsome Princes, giving them a ray of hope, and great reassurance, that they will be swept off their feet in pretty much the same way as this young maiden. Cinderella is, hence, the perfect bed-time story for little kids, for they learn and understand the idealistic point of view that we human beings see the world in, apart from the reality that they experience in their everyday life.