My very first article for the Epoch Times in 2005.
Hans Christian Andersen Turns 200
And the world remembers his tales
Two centuries have passed since the birth of the Danish storyteller who brought us such classic tales as “The Little Mermaid,” “The Emperor’s New Clothes,” and “The Ugly Duckling.” Hans Christian Andersen’s works maintain immense popularity among children of all ages to this day. The bicentenary celebration provides a unique opportunity for parents and teachers to expose children to these works and use these classic fairy tales as a tool to teach.
Among the most widely translated literary works, Has Christian Andersen’s fairy tales allow children the world over to explore the many themes and lessons of life. “The Little Mermaid” depicts the struggles of a young mermaid with her place in the world. “The Emperor’s New Clothes” illustrates the effects of vanity on an Emperor who puts most importance on surface appearances. “The Ugly Duckling” tackles issues of self-worth as an ugly duckling grows into a beautiful swan. Opportunities abound throughout the hundreds of Andersen fairy tales written to entice our children’s imagination.
With the celebration of his birth, 2005 also brings many events throughout the world and additional opportunities to engage young minds. The Hans Christian Andersen 2005 Foundation (www.hca2005.com) is the hub of the celebration and provides extensive background on the life and works of the artist, as well as updates on events. Parents and teachers in search of local events can contact their local libraries and universities to find out how they are marking the bicentenary.
The tales of Hans Christian Andersen have become part of the fabric of humanity. Taking a look back at these classic tales is as much fun for adults as it is for children.
Hans Christian Andersen once said, “Life itself is the most wonderful fairy tale.” It is no surprise his fairy tales reflect the many wonders of life itself. Happy birthday, and thank you, Hans Christian Andersen.