Andersen's Fairy Tales
Andersen was Danish, and boy was he proud of it! Every third story or so contains some reference to Denmark, the Danish language, the Danish landscape, or Danish historical figures. So if you're not up on your Danish history or culture, Andersen will totally do you a solid and help tell you, like… everything. The way that Andersen writes about Denmark has us convinced that it's a beautiful country, filled with remarkable inventors and artists as well as sturdy, faithful peasants. Could Andersen have been seeing his country through rose-colored lenses? It's certainly possible. We'll let you know what we think once we get back from our field trip to Denmark on Shmoop's private jet.
Questions About Visions of Denmark
- What were the most interesting things you learned about Denmark from reading the tales?
- How would you characterize Danish culture based on the tales?
- What's the most appealing part of the Danish landscape that you read about?
- If you were able to travel back in time to any period in Danish history, during any season, when would you pick and why?
Chew on This
Denmark shouldn't be so overlooked in European History courses.
Andersen's portrait of Denmark in his tales is completely one-sided.