Feminist Twist to Little Red Riding Hood

Through out the years, familiar childhood stories have been altered to show different meanings and ideas. The version of Little Red Riding Hood that I remember was very similar to the way that Rohini Chowdhury wrote it. (Link)In this version Red was portrayed as being a sweet innocent girl going to Grandma’s house. The wolf was seen as the dominant scary character. Her clothes alone suggested her innocence. Her long dress, red sweater, and red cap made the readers sympathize with her. (image a on red riding pic1) This version of Little Red Riding Hood is male dominant power. It suggests that women need men to save them. Many feminists did not like this version, so they decided to put a little twist to this childhood story.

In Donna Leishman’s version of Little Red Riding, Red’s clothes suggest right away to the reader/viewer that this wasn’t going to be the same version as you remembered from when you were a child. Her baggy pants, Red Sweater, and the dirty looks she gives her mother suggest that Red is a rebellious teenager. (image b on red riding pic1) When the wolf first approaches her, Red seems semi annoyed, but opts to stay and listen to what he has to say. (image c on red riding pic1) I believe that the wolf is used to symbolize the stereotypical “bad boy” that mothers’ of teenage daughters tell you to avoid. I feel as if Red getting pregnant symbolizes how the times are changing and girls get pregnant at an earlier age. Like the previous student said we don’t see Red resisting the Wolf.  At the end of the story when Red has a gun pointed at her head I believe it shows how some teens don’t want to be parents at such a young age. It shows that there are consequences with every decision you make. (image d on red riding pic1)

Leishman’s Little Red Riding definitely has a feminist twist to Chowdhury’s version. It depicts Red as a rebellious teenager that is open to the idea of talking to the Wolf. Also having Red be pregnant suggests that Red wanted to have sex with the Wolf. The fact that Red was not saved by a male shows how Red is an independent woman.

red riding pic1

  Catherine Hardwicke produced her version of Little Red Riding Hood in March 2011. The producer of the Twilight series again had a feminist outlook on this childhood story.  Little Red Riding Hood does not play damsel in distress. She fights for what she believes in and will do anything to find out who the wolf is. Check out the trailer below!



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