The Psychological Use of Fairy Tales
Twice-Told Tales are not only for the young. Many have discovered the “magnificent, colorful, many-sided, fantasy world of fairy tales” as children, but, as Hans Dieckmann points out, we can rediscover their value as adults.
“As with all great art, the fairy tale’s deepest meaning will be different for each person, and different for the same person at various moments in his life.” (Bruno Bettelheim, The Uses of Enchantment)
By the use of case histories, Dr. Dieckmann recounts ways in which “the greatest treasures of the soul” can be revealed in fairy tales. He graphically shows how fairy tales can give “color and vivacity to a life grown empty, sterile, and desolate.” Dr. Dieckmann interprets the symbolic significance of many individual fairy tales and relates their meaning to various stages of a person’s development.