The story of goldilocks and the three bears is an interesting tale dealing with notions of scale and privacy. Goldilocks, usually depicted as a pretty young blonde girl, the perfect representation of innocence, discovers an empty house one morning in the woods. Inside she discovers 3 differently sized bowls of porridge (eating the smallest), 3 differently sized chairs (sitting in, and breaking, the smallest) and 3 differently sized beds; tired from her porridge eating and chair breaking activities, she falls asleep in the smallest bed, finding it “not to hard” and “not too soft”. Unbeknownst to her, the house belongs to a family of bears; Papa, Mama, and Baby Bear, who were out for a morning walk while waiting for their freshly cooked breakfast of porridge to cool down. Upon returning to their home they discover the food eaten, their furniture damanged and the angelic little Goldilocks asleep in Baby Bear’s bed. They promptly wake her up, and according to the original version of the tale, eat her.
The story deals with several themes, foremost being the respect of privacy. But the story uses several other themes in its narrative before arriving at its final message, namely the representation of scale, access and preciousness of the miniature. Each of the bowls, chairs and beds are described in relation to one and other, often in detail, yet it is always the smallest of the three that Goldlilocks chooses. This is because the larger objects represent the monstrous – the larger bowls of porridge are too hot and burn her tongue, the larger chairs are too high and too empty to be confortable, and the larger beds alternately too hard or too soft. The fact that she consumes all three smallest items, by eating, breaking and defiling, depicts the vileness of her crime; she trangresses in turn the represenation of the miniature as the precious, the fragile and the sacred.
And at the end we have a hero inversion, the angelicly portrayed Goldilocks exposed and is eaten for her transgressions. The poor victimised family of bears show their teeth and attack as animals. Beware young children, respect the privacy of others and appearances can be deceptive.