Wisdom Meets Fantasy: Traversing The Magical World Of Fables
Let me tell you the tale of tales by moonlight that is called fables. As the sun sets and night draws near the gathering of kids around an elder (symbolically known as Aunt Nkem) being the centre of attraction is a sight to behold, as they are a symbol of wisdom intending to hopefully pass this same sage to the children gathered around.
Like one full of wisdom, the children pay attention to the story of the tortoise who took on the name All Of You so he can lay claim to anything given to all in the animal kingdom.
Fables are popularly known for their instructional values and guidance, is a form of storytelling known universally. Let us move away from the meaning of what we all know to explore deeper the true meaning and worth of the dying culture of fables. Known for their instructional substance, they also add to the moment of bonding between families. I imagine that a few remember the popular “Tales by Moonlight” that streamed our black and white TV of the past or those who were exposed to “Aesop’s Fable” by the slave writer but further popularized by Enid Blyton’s retelling. Or is it our very own renowned folklorist Mike Ejeagha famously known for his oral performance by putting fables into his songs, whichever experience they all aim and have the same intention.
Keeping up with the change in trend some cartoons are fables brought to life on screen, they represent an age-old practice of child grooming culture importantly used as an instructional guide in the early stages of child formation, to instil the idea of cause and effect. Fables are brought to life in some cartoons as the oral tradition of passing by word of mouth from one person to another is fast dying if not dead. How many parents know really good fables to use to correct their children after they have been bad instead of the beating and screaming method? When last was a fable recounted to you?
Not forgetting the characters involved in fable stories, which combines all creatures great and small, ranging from humans to animals. Some stories may have just one species or a combination of both, being both humans and animals living and communicating with each other. Naturally, that is not the way of things but for the purpose of “dulce et utile” according to Greek philosopher Horace, such absurdity as it may seem is accommodated.
These stories eventually work with animals peculiar to their settings and locations like in the African region which is still dependent on which and what is applicable in their domain we would usually have stories as the tortoise, the lion, the elephant, the wolf and the lamb.
With attention paid to these stories, we see that these animals have a designated role which no one knows how this came to be. The usual crafty and shady elements are tagged to the fox, tortoise and some animals even outside fables or still within such as Baloo the bear in The Jungle Book or in other fables were the lamb symbolises gentility and meekness being preyed on by either the lion, wolf and any other not mentioned. Such is seen in the story of the three little pigs.
Being concerned on the type of individual’s kids become and being categorised in some way as children’s literature, the use of fables, therefore, take the place as a guide to explore and communicate to the mind of a child why certain actions or behaviours are bad and the consequences of such actions when ventured into. Having instructional properties of a strong sense of morals is what differentiates fables from the regular cartoons of today. Fable is a sure way to igniting the spark between children and adults.