My friend Tammy has posted this quote from the original version of Cinderella on Facebook:
“When you are queen, you will never have to walk.” With these words the mother helps cut off the daughters’ toes and heels so their feet fit into the slippers.
I can’t help but to think the Grim Grimm Brothers are aptly named.
To the Chinese, this shouldn’t be unfamiliar. Our ancestors had been “customizing” girls’ feet for centuries, except that we didn’t cut them. We tied them into knots and crushed the bones so they could fit into tiny, embroidered silk shoes.
Foot-binding was a fashion in ancient China. Girls had their feet bound since childhood, especially the wealthy ones, or those seeking marriage into rich households.
And the wealthy ones never had to walk.
Back to Cinderella, as creepy as the mother’s decision may seem, it is a very accurate portrayal of what people will do to get to power in real life.
It is a small price to lose a few toes, when it gives you the power to make thousands lose their heads.
But I suppose the Grimm Brothers had never read Chinese history, especially how Wu Zetian, the only Empress who ruled in the history of China, came to power.
She murdered her new-born baby and blamed it on her competition (namely, the Empress), causing the latter’s downfall. One-shot kill.
If the mother was as vicious as Wu, she would have killed her daughters, trimmed her own feet, and become queen herself.
Then she would take over the throne, wipe out the royal family, and start a reign of terror.