posted by S .
I was wondering if it was possible for you to read my essay and critique it and correct any grammar errors. I haven't written an essay in a long time, so it took me a while to come up with this. I read through my essay many times and I do hear that it doesn't flow easily.
Have you ever been in a situation where your own family member is lusting for you? The fairy tale "Donkey Skin" addresses the difficult topic of abuse and incest. A topic deemed as a taboo in the society, but important to discuss for young people because it gives them hope. Donkey skin, the heroine, goes through many transformations of herself to overcome her father's evil desire of incest.
Donkey Skin's first transformation takes place when she ran away from her father with the help of her fairy Godmother and disguised herself with the donkey's skin. "It's such a perfect disguise and so horrible that once she conceal herself inside, nobody will ever believe that it adorns anyone so beautiful as her" (70). Not only the donkey's skin was a "perfect disguise" but can be translated as Donkey skin's way of showing that she has been tainted by her father's sins. He was an animal to her, so then she became one herself. Also by cloaking herself with the donkey's skin, she has become invisible. While she was visible, she was endangered by her father's desires of wanting to marry her and couldn't defend herself because she was young and vulnerable. Thus her period of social exclusion was an opportunity for Donkey Skin to become more mature, and gather strength for her return.
Every Sunday, another transformation occurs, Donkey skin locks herself in her room, cleans herself, and dresses up. She wears her beautiful gowns and looks at herself in front of a large mirror. She feels "satisfied and happy" (71). The mirror in fairy tales symbolizes vanity and conscience. With the mirror, Donkey skin can see her true self or conscience, a Princess. Also she sees herself as someone who is not only beautiful, but strong and brave. If she had marry her father, she'll never feel delighted as she is now.
During her Sunday transformation, Donkey Skin's only regret "was that she did not have enough room to spread out the trains of the dresses on the floor" (71). Her regret foreshadows that her time in isolation will be coming to an end because she cannot stay hidden forever. If she stays in her room too long it can lead to narcissism. What she needs is to be visible, to be seen by someone else: her prince. She is a princess after all, and a princess needs her prince.
With Donkey skin's new found wisdom and confidence, she was able to captivate or even cast a spell on the prince to a point where he became lovesick. He couldn't rest until he had her. Thus he ordered her to bake a cake. She was brave enough to be the one proposing first by dropping her ring in the cake. By doing this, she is hinting him that if he wants her, he must marry her first.
She had her last transformation where she goes into her room for the last time, clean herself, and dressed up to present herself to the King and Queen. "She arrived at the palace and passed through the halls in her blue dress whose radiance could not be matched" (73). Donkey Skin dressed so beautifully to show the King that she is fit to be the wife of the prince and even the future queen.
Donkey Skin had her happily ever after ending of marrying the Prince and reuniting with her father. This fairy tale spoke the unspeakable (incest), and provided a refuge for young people going through incest. Donkey Skin may be an unpopular tale in Western cultures, but gives a positive message that people going through this are not alone, and must persevere. Maybe all they need is some transformation like Donkey to mature and grow stronger to succeed in the end.