The Rumpelstiltskin Problem

What was with that bizarre fairy tale Rumpelstiltskin?

WHY would a miller claim that his daughter can spin straw into gold? WHY would the king believe him? And WHY would a odd little man that can spin straw into gold do so in exchange for a tiny gold ring? The story is just SILLY.

In an attempt to make sense of this wayward fairy tale, Vivian Vande Velde provides six alternative versions of the classic account, each of which is far more intriguing and revealing than the original.
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