Different components are included in the IELTS exam to assess a candidate’s overall English abilities. The IELTS reading test is used to assess and verify each participant’s precise reading ability. This test lasts 60 minutes, and you must read the passage and answer 40 questions based on it.

This can only be done if you are sufficiently equipped to interpret spheres. To recognise the terms or sentences used in the passage, you must have a high level of concentration. This will assist you in receiving answers at a faster rate.

A passage on fairy tales which are scary and horrific reading responses is included in this article to help you comprehend the exam’s overall format. Read the entire article to get the idea of reading the passage in a timely manner and answering the passage’s questions thoughtfully.

Also Read: Air Traffic Control in the USA: IELTS Reading Answers and Exam Preparation

Why Fairy Tales are Really Scary Tales

Here is the answer to the IELTS reading passage. Before jumping to the answer, let us read the passage and then have a look at the questions too.

Section A

Some people think that fairy tales are just stories to amuse children, but their universal and enduring appeal may be due to more serious reasons.

People of every culture tell each other fairy tales but the same story often takes a variety of forms in different parts of the world. In the story of Little Red Riding Hood that European children are familiar with, a young girl on the way to see her grandmother meets a wolf and tells him where she is going. The wolf runs on ahead and disposes of the grandmother, then gets into bed dressed in the grandmother’s clothes to wait for Little Red Riding Hood.

Section B

You may think you know the story – but which version? In some versions, the wolf swallows up the grandmother, while in others it locks her in a cupboard. In some stories, Red Riding Hood gets the better of the wolf on her own, while in others a hunter or a woodcutter hears her cries and comes to her rescue.

The universal appeal of these tales is frequently attributed to the idea that they contain cautionary messages: in the case of Little Red Riding Hood, to listen to your mother, and avoid talking to strangers. ‘It might be what we find interesting about this story is that it’s got this survival-relevant information in it,’ says anthropologist Jamie Tehrani at Durham University in the UK.

Section C

But his research suggests otherwise. ‘We have this huge gap in our knowledge about the history and prehistory of storytelling, despite the fact that we know this genre is an incredibly ancient one,’ he says. That hasn’t stopped anthropologists, folklorists* and other academics from devising theories to explain the importance of fairy tales in human society. Now Tehrani has found a way to test these ideas, borrowing a technique from evolutionary biologists.

To work out the evolutionary history, development and relationships among groups of organisms, biologists compare the characteristics of living species in a process called ‘phylogenetic analysis. Tehrani has used the same approach to compare related versions of fairy tales to discover how they have evolved and which elements have survived longest.

Section D

Tehrani’s analysis focused on Little Red Riding Hood in its many forms, which include another Western fairy tale known as The Wolf and the Kids. Checking for variants of these two tales and similar stories from Africa, East Asia and other regions, he ended up with 58 stories recorded from oral traditions. Once his phylogenetic analysis had established that they were indeed related, he used the same methods to explore how they have developed and altered over time.

Section E

First he tested some assumptions about which aspects of the story alter least as it evolves, indicating their importance. Folklorists believe that what happens in a story is more central to the story than the characters in it – that visiting a relative, only to be met by a scary animal in disguise, is more fundamental than whether the visitor is a little girl or three siblings, or the animal is a tiger instead of a wolf.

Section F

However, Tehrani found no significant difference in the rate of evolution of incidents compared with that of characters. ‘Certain episodes are very stable because they are crucial to the story, but there are lots of other details that can evolve quite freely,’ he says. Neither did his analysis support the theory that the central section of a story is the most conserved part. He found no significant difference in the flexibility of events there compared with the beginning or the end.

Section G

But the really big surprise came when he looked at the cautionary elements of the story. ‘Studies on hunter-gatherer folk tales suggest that these narratives include really important information about the environment and the possible dangers that may be faced there – stuff that’s relevant to survival,’ he says. Yet in his analysis such elements were just as flexible as seemingly trivial details. What, then, is important enough to be reproduced from generation to generation?

Section H

The answer, it would appear, is fear – blood-thirsty and gruesome aspects of the story, such as the eating of the grandmother by the wolf, turned out to be the best-preserved of all. Why are these details retained by generations of storytellers, when other features are not? Tehrani has an idea: ‘In an oral context, a story won’t survive because of one great teller. It also needs to be interesting when it’s told by someone who’s not necessarily a great storyteller.’ Maybe being swallowed whole by a wolf, then cut out of its stomach alive is so gripping that it helps the story remain popular, no matter how badly it’s told.

Section I

Jack Zipes at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, is unconvinced by Tehrani’s views on fairy tales. ‘Even if they’re gruesome, they won’t stick unless they matter,’ he says. He believes the perennial theme of women as victims in stories like Little Red Riding Hood explains why they continue to feel relevant. But Tehrani points out that although this is often the case in Western versions, it is not always true elsewhere.

Section J

In Chinese and Japanese versions, often known as The Tiger Grandmother, the villain is a woman, and in both Iran and Nigeria, the victim is a boy.

Mathias Clasen at Aarhus University in Denmark isn’t surprised by Tehrani’s findings. ‘Habits and morals change, but the things that scare us, and the fact that we seek out entertainment that’s designed to scare us – those are constant,’ he says. Clasen believes that scary stories teach us what it feels like to be afraid without having to experience real danger, and so build up resistance to negative emotions.

Why Fairy Tales are Really Scary Tales – IELTS Reading Answers with Questions

Here are the questions with answers

Question 1

Fill in the blanks in the valid sequence.

1)In fairy tales, plot details are important.

2)Tehrani opposes the notion that fairy tales include life lessons.

3)A number of hypotheses exist regarding the societal value of fairy tales.

4)Perspectives on the evolution of fairy tales

5)All of Tehrani’s fairy tale analysis


Methods utilised in biological research may be used to provide A.

They are only surviving because of B.

C has a lot of variances all over the place.

D is made of animals that can morph into humans.

Originally, the letters E were pronounced rather than written.

F has been created without any basis in actuality.


1)Answer C

2)Answer B

3)Answer F

4)Answer A

5)Answer E

Also Read: Why Some Women Cross the Finish Line Ahead of Men: IELTS Reading Passage With Answers

Question 2

Complete the following sentences with the terms in the list

Tehrani used evolutionary biology approaches to see if 1………………….. There were 58 stories from all over the world. He also wanted to discover which components of the stories had the fewest 2…………………., because he thought these would be the most important. He discovered, contrary to popular assumption, that some 3……………………. that were included in a story changed with time, and that the middle of the story was no more crucial than other parts. He was also astonished when elements of a story that appeared to provide some form of 4…………………. turned out to be insignificant. The feature of a story’s survival that he found most significant was 5……………….


A     ending

B     events

C     warning

D     links

E     records

F     variations

G     horror

H     people

I     plot







Also Read: What is Exploration: Have a Look at IELTS Passage with Reading Answers

Question 3

Choose the correct alternative from the given four options

#How did Jamie Tehrani put his fairy tale theories to the test?

A He compared and contrasted oral and written versions of the same stories.

B He examined a variety of variations on the same fundamental storey.

C He looked at stories from all across the world that were unrelated to each other.

D He compared the evolution of fairy tales to the evolution of actual creatures.

#When examining Tehrani’s beliefs, Jack Zipes claims that

A Tehrani overlooks important changes in women’s roles.

B stories that are too frightening are not generally taken seriously.

C Tehrani exaggerates the significance of violence in fiction.

D Stories characteristics only persist if they have a deeper meaning.

#What is the significance of Tehrani’s references to Chinese and Japanese folk tales?

A to show that Jack Zipes’ theory is erroneous

B to imply that crime is a worldwide issue

C to imply that all fairy tales have a similar purpose

D to support Jack Zipes’ arguments

#What is Mathias Clasen’s opinion on fairy tales?

A They provide a secure environment in which to learn to cope with fear.

B They are a form of entertainment that some people shy away from.

C They are a reflection of our society’s evolving values.

D They impair our ability to deal with real-life issues.






Also Read: Driverless Cars: Check Out the IELTS Passage with Reading Answers

IELTS Exam Preparation Tips

Here are some tips for the reading section of IELTS which will be helpful for the aspirants.

#To cultivate the habit of reading rapidly, practise reading a variety of materials in English.

#Read each question carefully before answering it to make it easier to find answers afterwards. If you can, make a list of possible responses as you read. Make notes or highlight any section of the text if you are taking the IELTS on a computer.

#Begin by skimming through the material to get a general notion of what it’s about. #Once you’ve gotten a feel for it, read it slowly and carefully, bearing in mind the questions you need to answer.

Also Read: Important English Idioms and Phrases For IELTS: Idioms and Phrases One Should Know for IELTS

Some More Tips to Ace IELTS

#Because you do not need to apply your own knowledge in order to solve the questions, all of the solutions will be provided in the text. To avoid missing them, read attentively.

#As you answer, double-check that you’re using the correct spellings from the passage.

#There may be questions to test your comprehension of the reading at times. For example, the question may be on the theme, highlighting specific words or ideas that represent the passages’ main point.

Also Read: How to Practice for the IELTS Reading Test? Here’s Some Online IELTS Reading Test Preparation Tips


Hopefully, this article has been of assistance to you in your IELTS preparation. You should read more articles like this to improve your brain and prepare for getting good grades. If you have any questions concerning the exam or are looking for IELTS advice, the IELTS Ninja website is the place to go. This site provides everything you’re looking for.

All of the tutors are available to assist you, and they are doing it with the utmost passion and effort. You will learn at your own pace, using individual or customised ways to gain a deeper knowledge of everything. Many aspirants, like yourself, have arrived at their destination just as a result of visiting the website and asking their questions.

To achieve effective results, you must contact such pros as soon as feasible to enhance your knowledge and skills.

Also Read: IELTS Reading Score Calculator: How is the IELTS Reading Score Calculated?

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Amiksha is a budding Content Writer. A young writer who has written over 250 poems and quotes and also an author of a famous Wattpad novel named “Ma and the Magical Kingdom” and always sets her goals high with her determination like the sky. Her mother is her inspiration and her family is her biggest support. She has her interest in writing, reading novels and craft. She has developed her hardworking and disciplined persona from her mother. She is very out going and loves travelling, trekking and hiking. She believes in the quote “Creativity lies in actions not experience

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