Listening and acting

Listening and acting are two powerful tools that save children and give them long lives- even as religious books posit. The story of the little red riding hood is exciting and ignites the story of monsters. It is an interesting fairytale that brings out the themes of death, the relationship between parents and children, and monsters. The version of the fairytale that this essay will analyze is that of Charles Perrault titled ‘Little Red Riding Hood.’ This paper aims to explain the theme of monsters in the fairytale, justifying its use in the text, explaining the fears and anxieties, and the benefits that the monster presents.

  1. Is there a Monster in this Text?

There is a monster in the story of little red riding hood, Charles Perrault’s version. The monster is depicted in the form of a wolf. My definition of a monster is a person who can transform themselves into a scary animal of being. Since childhood, I have believed that a monster is more of an animal like person that people are afraid of, especially in the dark. I relate this meaning to the little red riding hood story where little red riding hood met with a wolf who wanted to eat her.


By transformation, I mean that the beings can transform themselves from humans to animals and from animals to humans. They have the ability to transform within seconds and without other people noticing it. Alternatively, monsters are able to transform themselves through behaving like human beings to resemble humans. In the story, the monster, who is the wolf, transforms himself from an animal to a human being to confuse little red riding hood. At first, the wolf fakes his voice to lure the grandmother into opening the door. He fakes the voice to resemble that of a riding hood, meaning he transforms himself. “Your grandchild, Little Red Riding Hood,” replied the wolf, counterfeiting her voice; “who has brought you a cake and a little pot of butter sent you by mother” (Perrault 1). Also, he gets into the bed and wears grandmother’s clothes to look like her. He does this to confuse riding hood so that he can lure her into entering the bedroom and eat her. Due to such transformations, the wolf is a monster.

My definition of a monster states that monsters are animal-like creatures. The wolf fits in the definition in that he is depicted in the form of a wolf, which is an animal. Even though he is able to speak like human beings, his physical appearance depicts that of an animal. This means that the wolf qualifies to be called a monster. Thirdly, monsters are creatures that people are afraid of because they could eat, harm, or kill them. In the story, riding hood’s mother knew that her daughter was passing through a dangerous place with monsters. She, therefore, warned her of talking to anyone since she knew even monsters could transform themselves into human beings. In that case, he was afraid of the wolf and afraid of her daughter being harmed or eaten by wild animals. It means that people are afraid that wild animals are monsters, which qualifies the wolf in this story to be a monster.

Lastly, monsters eat, harm, or kill people. The wolf was so hungry from the story when it saw little red riding hood. He wanted to follow her so that he could arrive before her, eat her grandmother, and eat her later. He lures her by asking questions, “Does she live far off (Perrault 1)?” He ran fast and ate the grandmother, after which, when riding hood entered the house, he lured her into the bed by saying, “Put the cake and the little pot of butter upon the stool, and come get into bed with me (Perrault 2)”. By eating them, he harmed and killed them. This means that from the definition, the wolf is a monster. As Asma posits, monsters are symbolic. The story does not really depict a monster that can be explicitly be identified as a monster. It represents a wolf or a wild animal that symbolizes a monster. The fact that monsters lure, eat, and kill people shows that the wolf symbolizes a monster, which is why I see him as a monster. He is a symbol of a monster backed up by Asma’s sentiments that monsters are symbolic.

  • Monsters as Fears and Anxieties

In this fairytale, the monster stands for three kinds of fears and anxieties; fear of walking alone in the forests or woods, the fear of talking to strangers, and fear of death. To start with the fear of death, traditionally and even in the modern world, people fear death. Death is one of the things that most people fear, and try to overcome it when confronted with situations that could lead to death. This is evident from the fairytale in that people are afraid that the wolf could lead to their death. For instance, the fact that the wolf does not eat riding hood in the woods because of the nearby woodcutters in the forest means that people fear death. The wolf fears that because death is not a good thing to people, he could be killed when the woodcutters realize he is eating the little girl. The wolf himself also depicts the fear of death because he fears the woodcutters seeing him eating the little girl and killing him. The fear works by making people fear death because it is perceived as wrong.

The second fear is the fear of walking alone in the forests or woods. Given that riding hood was alone, and he was lured to speak to the wolf while alone means that walking alone in the woods is dangerous. For instance, “as she was going through the wood, she met with a wolf, who had a very great mind to eat her up (Perrault 1).” Due to the occurrences that followed after riding hood walked alone in the woods, it sends some fear that when one walks alone in the forests, there is a likelihood that they will be targeted by monsters that will cheat them. In that case, the fear transmitted through the monster is the fear of walking alone through the forests or woods as people would fear to collide with monsters.

free essay typer



The third fear is the fear of talking to strangers, which is depicted through riding hood’s experience. Riding hood’s mother had warned her against talking to strangers. Supposedly, her mother knew that strangers in the forest would lie to her or lure her into eating her. She supposedly suspected monsters residing within the woods and always talked to young girls to prey on them. Because she knew that people fear talking to strangers, she warned her daughter since strangers could be dangerous. The wolf gives assurance of the existing fear that talking to strangers might be dangerous. The story also demonstrates that when the little girl talks to the stranger, she loses her life and that of her grandmother. The monster represents that fear by luring the little girl after she talks to him.

As Asma posits, monsters represent real fears about everything, like the world, ourselves, and others. In this case, the fears that are represented by the monster are the same fears that the real-world fears. For example, from experience, I fear walking alone and talking to strangers. This is because I do not know what walking alone will bring or what the strangers will do to me after talking to them. Besides, people in the real world fear death. For example, people indeed fear death. If death is not feared, then people would not be keeping themselves safe or taking medications when they fall sick. Humans tend to keep their health first, like eating well, taking medicines, exercising, and preventing their bodies from contracting diseases, which means they fear death.

C. Benefits to Monsters

Despite monsters entertaining audiences by offering them a fun scare, they have other benefits such as helping them face their fears and phobias, socialising, and influencing actual life decision making. To start with facing fears and phobias, the monster assumes that when one is confronted with a monster, they must understand that it is a monster that must be dealt with and overcome. For example, if a monster approaches an audience who has read the tale, he is likely to face the fear because he already knows it is a threat to his life. By this, people learn to meet other types of fears and phobias that confront them. This ranges from many kinds of fears and phobias that people could face.

Secondly, reading through a story with a monster could help audiences socialize and establish relationships. This is because people get scared and want to call others to enjoy the fun scare that such a tale presents. The monster represents the benefit in that it scares people, which prompts them to call in their friends to read the scary part of the story. The scary identity of the monster brings people together, enabling them to socialize and establish relationships.

Lastly, reading through monsters’ stories influences the real-life decision making of audiences. It is expected that stories are written to help people learn from them and implement the lessons into their real lives. They implement the lessons by making informed real-life decisions. For instance, in the story, the monster represents the benefit by lying to the little girl, which prompts audiences to learn about not talking to strangers. As Asman posits, monsters represent what is actually happening in the real world. This means that audiences’ decision-making process is influenced. From the story, the poor girl did not know it was dangerous to talk to a wolf, “the poor child, who did not know that it was dangerous to stay and talk to a wolf (Perrault 2).” However, children who read the tale learns that it is dangerous.


The story of monsters has been retold in many fairytales, which depicts what happens in the real world. From the story of the little red riding hood, the monster represents some of the things that people experience in the real world, the fears anxieties, and create a pathway for audiences to learn from the story. People need to read tale monsters not just for fun scares but also for knowledge acquisition because they reflect real-world situations. They need to realize that it is not about reading to get scared but to become strong about the fears and anxieties they experience in life. People need to realize the educational value that fairytales present and read them more often.

Work Cited

Perrault, Charles. “Little Red Riding Hood (1697).” The Trials & Tribulations of Little Red Riding Hood. Routledge, 2017. 91-93.