Traditional Thursdays: The Emperor’s New Clothes


When reflecting on the books of my childhood, I couldn’t help but think of this classic story written by Hans Christian Anderson. The Emperor’s New Clothes follows a day in the life of a wealthy, selfish, and material-invested emperor.   While he is deeply consumed in finding new clothing every hour, he surprises the reader in his gullibility of believing in an invisible material. The reason it remains prominent in my memory is due to the various methods it was presented to me as a student. I recall in kindergarten hearing the story told by our librarian in the most dramatized manner, and then in 1st grade watching the book come to life through a mini-skit done by a local theater. The Emperor’s New Clothes exposed students to the power of imagination within a story, while containing elements of comedy and dramatic irony. It is also a great story for young children to acknowledge the importance of humility and respect. 

While exploring the internet for some background on the story, I came across some intriguing information in regards to this tale being adapted in other countries. Later versions of the same story were published in different countries, adding elements of its specific culture. For example, in Sri Lanka the storyis called The Invisible Silk Robe (1914) involving a king as the main character. And in Turkey the tale is known as The King’s New Turban (1886). This exciting new information demonstrated the immenseimpact story and the start of global growth for children’s literature.



published by Angela Bacaling


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