The Laughing Place

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The Laughing Place is a traditional African American folktale, featuring Br'er Rabbit, Br'er Fox and Br'er Bear. It is famous for its inclusion among Joel Chandler Harris' Uncle Remus stories.

Br'er Rabbit in Disney's Song of the South (1946). The story of "The Laughing Place" is retold in the 1946 film Song of the South.[1]

Summary[edit]

Following Br'er Rabbit's capture, the hero leads his captors, wily Br'er Fox and dim-witted Br'er Bear, to his "laughin' place". Out of curiosity, they let him lead the way, only for Br'er Rabbit to walk them straight into a cavern of bees. While the antagonists are stung, Br'er Rabbit escapes.

This story can be traced to African trickster tales, particularly the hare that figures prominently in the storytelling traditions in Western Africa, Central Africa, and Southern Africa. In the Akan traditions of West Africa, the trickster is usually the spider (see Anansi), though the plots of tales of the spider are often identical with those of stories of Br'er Rabbit.[2]

In popular culture[edit]

The story was used in the movie Song of the South along with "The Tar Baby" and "The Briar Patch".[1] It is also referenced in a dark ride scene of Splash Mountain, a log flume-style attraction at Disneyland, Orlando's Magic Kingdom and Tokyo Disneyland, based on Song of the South.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Brasch, Walter M. (2000). Brer Rabbit, Uncle Remus, and the 'Cornfield Journalist': The Tale of Joel Chandler Harris. Mercer University Press. pp. 74, 275.
  2. ^ Opala, Joseph A.. "Gullah Customs and Traditions". The Gullah: Rice, Slavery, and the Sierra Leone-American Connection. [self-published source?]