批判思维 Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf?
His big eyes and big teeth also gave Little Red Riding Hood quite a scare when she discovered what he'd done with her poor old grandmother. As fairy tale villains go, the Big Bad Wolf has a fairly nasty reputation.
But is he really all that bad? Are all the stories about him true? Or could they be fabrications meant to sully his good name? For example, could the story of the Three Little Pigs be nothing more than pro-pork propaganda pushed by a group with an anti-wolf agenda?
Jon Scieszka's 1989 book, The True Story of the Three Little Pigs, makes a good case for giving the Big Bad Wolf a closer look. Perhaps his run-in with the Three Little Pigs was nothing more than a misunderstanding blown (pun totally intended) way out of proportion.
After all, there are two sides to every story, right? If you have brothers or sisters, we're sure you agree with that old saying. When you get into an argument with your siblings and it's time to explain things to Mom or Dad, there are usually as many stories as there are people involved!
Whether or not the Big Bad Wolf was really that bad or not isn't ultimately important, since he's just a fictional character. But what is important is to remember that every story you hear or read is told from a particular perspective.
Before you believe everything you hear or read, you should carefully consider the source of the information. Do your own research if you need to. Don't automatically take everything you hear or read as truth, just because you see it in print or hear it on the radio or television.
Some people may try to persuade you to believe something because it helps them in some way. Others may not be trying to deceive you, but they may fail to include all relevant information you need to make an informed decision.
So what about the Big Bad Wolf? Was he really that big and bad? Maybe. Some historians argue that these old fables had practical purposes. In the past, wolves were dangerous and the risk of attacks in the woods was real. Fables such as the story of Little Red Riding Hood could have served as a warning to children not to explore unknown forests where wolves might live.
Try It Out
Are you ready to take an up-close look at the Big Bad Wolf? Find a friend or family member to help you check out the following activities:
What other fictional characters get a bad rap? The witch from Hansel and Gretel? What about the giant from Jack and the Beanstalk? Do these two characters or any others you know about have a different story to tell? Are they misunderstood? How would they tell their stories? Pick out a fictional villain from a favorite fable or fairy tale and tell his or her — or its — story from a new perspective. Share your story with a friend or family member. What do they think?
What kind of reputation do you have? Are you kind? Considerate? Or do you have a reputation as being mean or bossy? Are you aware of how others see you? Ask a friend or family member to share with you what qualities others see in you. Do you think most people understand you? Or are you misunderstood? What would you like others to think about you?
At one time or another, we all feel misunderstood. It's usually not a good feeling. Think about a time in your life when you've felt misunderstood. How did you handle that situation? What can you learn from that situation about how to interact with others? Are you quick to judge others? Or do you seek to understand others fully before forming an opinion? Discuss with a friend or family member how we all can do more to understand others more fully.
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