The Korean Cinderella
by Shirley Climo (Author), Ruth Heller (Illustrator)
picture book ages 4-9
Today a Field Trip Life is off to old Korea before it was divided into North and South. We have stacks of books set in Korea and I asked my daughter which one I should write about. She chose The Korean Cinderella saying it was her favorite book when she was little.
Christina Mee still likes it as you can see. I’m not so sure about Koda.
In this Cinderella variant, a daughter was born to an old gentleman and his wife. To celebrate they planted a pear tree in the courtyard to celebrate and they named their daughter Pear Blossom.
As these stories go, Pear Blossom grew more and more beautiful. Her mother died and the old man took a new wife who had a daughter named Peony. (sound familiar?) Of course this new mother and sister were incredibly cruel to Pear Blossom. She was forced to cook and clean and was dressed in rags. The step mother and sister addressed her as Little Pig. Pear Blossom was given impossible tasks to perform but was able to accomplish them with the help of a frog, sparrows and an ox who were tokgabis or magical creatures. As in all good Cinderella tales, she meets a nobleman who recognizes her beauty inside and out, and she is able to live in happiness.
The Korean Cinderella is based on a number of different Korean versions of the tale. As in all versions, don’t you wonder why the father is so oblivious to the cruelty of the step mother?
The beautiful illustrations show the symbols,homes, temples, and clothes of long ago Korea.
We have a collection of these Korean Norigae pendants which are traditionally worn by women as accessories on their hanboks. We place ours on the Christmas tree each year.
Love when classics are offered a twist, especially a cultural one. Love to see Mee Mee too. Good job as you make your way through the alphabet. See you tomorrow, Claire.
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Stephen Tremp says
One thing I miss about having a real job was all the cutlure. I managed three departmetns and 25 very diverse people. I allowed them to wear their clothing from Vietnam, Cambodia, India, Mexico, New York. Whatever. Their festivities and holidays anc clothing and food was just amazing.
A to Z Cohost
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Tina Cho says
My writing friend Trine Grillo sent me to your blog today, and I’m glad! Thanks for adding a link to my blog in your blog roll. And this is neat someone wrote a Korean Cinderella story. I LOVE your idea to hang those norigae pendants on the tree. You must know a lot about Korea, too?
Claire Annette Noland says
Thanks for stopping by. I’ve been following your blog for awhile and am thankful for your great ideas, teaching and encouragement.
I’m always trying to learn more about Korea.
Rosie Amber says
I love your theme of a world tour. Dropping in from the A to Z I have given your blog a shout out from my letter L today https://rosieamber.wordpress.com/
Sarah Ferguson says
Koda does look like he might prefer a book with more dog pictures!
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