Enchantment and Symbolism: The Psychological Function of Fairy Tales with Lisa

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This class has passed

Fairy tales exist in a land located far away from here, in a time that is not now.

They may include cursed kingdoms, candy houses, and all manner of fantastical happenings. But these old stories also involve injustice, threat, and hostile caregivers among other grim realities.

In this class we get curious about the psychological function of our favourite fairy tales and explore the language of symbolism. 

For example, you may not have been deliberately deserted in the woods like Hansel and Gretel, but many of us know what it feels like to be cast out and have to find our way back home (or outsmart a witch by cooking her in her own oven).

What will we cover?

Fairy tales are unreal, but they may not be untrue. This class involves exploration of the fairy tale ‘blue-print’ which often begins with an ‘existential dilemma’ or realistic challenge (like sibling rivalry or a request to ‘go by yourself to your grandmother’s house’). 

This is followed by all things marvellous and grotesque before arriving at various ‘lessons’ such as the importance of be-friending a seemingly unpleasant figure or the gifts of embracing your unique nature, even when you are scorned by others.

Fairy tales assign extraordinary dignity to the smallest actions. 

In this class, you will:

  • Be guided through several reflective exercises designed to explore the symbolism and deeper message within your chosen tale 
  • Explore how this may contribute something of importance to you in the here and now. 
  • Consider what depth psychology has to say about imaginal elements and the role of the unconscious mind in making our way through a ‘deep, dark forest’.


    • Closed Captions
    • Auslan Interpreted Upon Request
    • Free Tix for First Nation Attendees
    • Early Bird Cheaper Tickets

    Who will be teaching? 

    Lisa (she/her) is a psychologist with a passion for myth and story. 

    In her practice, she has observed the power of stories to assist humans to make sense of themselves, other people and the world. Lisa works with individuals seeking meaningful change and increased levels of thriving in her private practice based in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne. 

    Outside of work, she is often found with her head in a book or lost on a hiking track somewhere on the outskirts of Melbourne.

    You can follow her on Instagram at @self_actualisation_project.

    Important info:

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    More about accessibility 

    Photo by cottonbro:…

    Any other questions or ways we can assist with accessibility? Just shoot delsi (she/her) an email at