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Wilderness Years: From Rapunzel to Travolta and General Zod
A blind prince wanders through a Biblical-looking stony desert. The strange coda to Rapunzel is often forgotten, but it's what I remember most about reading the Ladybird storybook as a child. And it's where I chose to start today's Something Understood programme for BBC Radio 4 exploring Wilderness Years. Follow the link to listen to it now. The witch has discovered Rapunzel's secret romance, shorn her hair and cast her out. She lies in wait for the Prince and hurls him from the tower. He is blinded by the brambles below. There follow several years in the Wilderness. Meanwhile Rapunzel has been wandering, too. In the unexpurgated version she's given birth to the Prince's twins and has been raising them alone for several years before they are reunited. The psychoanalytical reading is that the story is a metaphor for the repression and punishment of adolescent sexuality. It certainly didn't seem fair. The Ladybird "Happily Ever After" ending includes this: How happy Rapunzel and the