Simple narrative typically of folk origin dealing with supernatural beings. Fairy tales may be written or told for the amusement of children or may have a more sophisticated narrative containing supernatural or obviously improbable events, scenes, and personages and often having a whimsical, satirical, or moralistic character. The term embraces popular folktales such as “Cinderella” and “Puss in Boots,” as well as art fairy tales of later invention, such as those by Hans Christian Andersen. It is often difficult to distinguish between tales of literary and oral origin, because folktales have received literary treatment from early times, and literary tales can often be traced back to oral tradition.
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Typical African form of short story. Its ending is open to conjecture or is morally ambiguous, allowing the audience to comment or speculate on the correct solution to the problem posed, whether a conflict of loyalty, the need to choose a just response to a difficult situation, or the laying of blame when several parties seem equally guilty. Dilemma tales function both as instruction and entertainment and help establish social norms.
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Tale may refer to: