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We have been studying two fables The Bottle Imp byRobert Louis Stevenson and The Rocking Horse Winner by D.H. Lawrence. Which should be taken seriously?

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English Essay Wider Reading Which of these stories should be taken more seriously? You should consider: * What fables are and the purpose of writing them * The entertainment value of these stories in terms of their structure, suspense, surprises, writer's style * Their seriousness value: impact of the fantastical elements on the characters, the message each writer wants to get across, how strongly the writer feels about the subject * Conclusion: which story should be taken more seriously and why? Fables are short stories, which tell a moral or truth much like the parables of the bible. They were originally conveyed by word of mouth before being written down in collections. The most famous of these collections was written by Aesop. Most fables contain animals, which have human characteristics. We have been studying two fables The Bottle Imp by Robert Louis Stevenson and The Rocking Horse Winner by D.H. Lawrence. Robert Louis Stevenson was born on November 13, 1850 in Edinburgh. He suffered from a severe bronchial condition and spent most of his life abroad searching for climates, which would benefit his health. In this way he came to spend a lot of time in the pacific islands. ...read more.


Stevenson writes as if he is speaking to you, which is very good for a fable and is the only entertaining thing about the story. He starts the story by saying, "There was a man of the Island of Hawaii, whom I shall call Keawe; for the truth is, he still lives, and his name must be kept secret..." this makes you feel as if he is addressing you directly. This would be a very good story for telling by word of mouth rather than the written word. Writers like Jack Kerouac and Ray Bradbury used this style a lot in the 50's. I think The Rocking Horse Winner is a very entertaining story because you can relate to the characters more. Paul is very innocent and young, all he is trying to do is help his Mum and he is being exploited. This happens very often in the real world so we can empathise with him. The situation in which the story is set is very normal so you can understand what is happening. Also the want of money and the misuse of it are very commonplace so we can still relate to it even almost one hundred years after it was written. ...read more.


The fantastical element has relatively no effect on the rest of the characters in the story until the very end when Paul dies. This story also has lots of messages and morals in it such as, 'live within your means', 'be grateful for what you've got', 'money isn't everything', 'the love of money is the root of all evil', 'don't care what other people think of you', and 'money can't buy you love'. These morals have a lot more conviction in this story because the protagonist loses and people get their 'just deserts'. Lawrence obviously fells very strongly about this especially because he was always short of money and because of this the story is more conclusive. I think The Rocking Horse Winner should be taken more seriously because the message is strong and has feeling behind it. In the bottle imp the message is really weak because even though they have done a bad thing they live happily ever after. I don't think it is a very good fable either because its message is so weak. Paul however is fairly innocent and doesn't know he is doing wrong, in fact he is not even trying to get money for himself yet he comes to a sticky end. This hits you hard as you read the story and makes you take notice of the morals. Martha Ricketts 1 ...read more.

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