Life Of Pi Fairy Tales Research Paper

1734 Words7 Pages
The Life of Pi: A Modern Fairy-tale The Life of Pi by Yann Martel is an intriguing novel that follows a young boy, nicknamed Pi, in his quest to survive at sea with a full-grown tiger as his sole companion. The story shares many parallels with fairy-tales, from the structure, to the main character, to the animals, and to various details, shaping it into a pure example of a modern-day fairytale. The basic structure of the novel is reminiscent of the structure of fairy-tales. To begin, the main character's origins are established, specifically that of his name, Piscine Molitor Patel, and that of his nickname, Pi. The origin of a name or nickname is often established at the beginning of European fairy-tales, for example, the reader or listener…show more content…
The most obvious issue is that The Life of Pi is a long story, covering exactly 100 chapters, whereas fairy-tales are typically short. This is not always the case, however, as some fairy-tales are made up of a series or are a collection of smaller stories, for example, The Legends of King Arthur, the Irish legends of the Hero Finn MacCoul, and the Arabian Nights. Another oddity that is not usually associated with fairy-tales is the emphasis on religion and faith. However, many European and North American fairy-tales include the devil as a character in the story, and returning to the earlier example of Sinbad, he, like Pi, draws religious comfort from each of his adventures, despite constant misfortune and hardship. In fact, most of the stories in the Arabian Nights also have an emphasis on religion and faith. The Life of Pi is also full of dark and brutal elements, things that are not typically associated with fairy-tales. However, the fairy-tales that people are familiar with today have actually been cleaned up and edited to suit the moral standards of the modern society. Traditionally, fairy-tales are brimming over with brutality and grotesqueness, to the point that one is amazed that anyone could draw the conclusion that they are for children. In fact, man-eating and cannibalism, both of which are touched on in the novel, are common, especially in English and Irish stories, through trolls, ogres, giants, and witches, among others. It is also common for magic to play an important role, or for a mystical or fantastical place to be present, even in the most realistic of fairy-tales. Such a place is often one that at first glance would seem welcoming, but would prove to harbor great danger, such as a gathering populated by fairies, a palace belonging to a Genie, a house full of riches belonging to a giant, and in the novel's case, an

    More about Life Of Pi Fairy Tales Research Paper

      Open Document