The Manipulative White Seal Maid

“The White Seal Maid” by Jane Yolen was a decent read. I must say that I definitely enjoyed the “Temptation of Robin Greene” better.  As I was reading this story I couldn’t help comparing the two stories while I was reading.  At first, I saw immediately how the two compared to each other.  First it was obvious how the Selkies were able to seduce the humans using their supernatural enchantment power. The Selkies made the humans immediately obsessed with them and the humans fell in love with these supernatural creatures right away.  I also noticed how both Selkies had a very suttle way of telling the humans of their departure.  Both times they left the humans without much discussion and in rather sneaky ways. 

However, as I read, I began to notice more and more differences between the stories.  The biggest difference was how in the “White Seal Maid” the seal skin was hung above the door.  She made a decisive choice to stay vs Robin Greene who seemed more like a prisoner. 

This difference made me think about the difference between a mother Selkie and a father Selkie.  The mother Selkie stayed with her children and ended up leaving with them to continue nurturing her children while leaving the father behind.  However, the father Selkie left even before the child was born and did nothing to care for the child.  In society it’s no secret there are more single mothers than single fathers.  I feel like this connection with the two stories can be seen in correlation with today’s society.  Also, when the mother Selkie left with her children, the husband accepted their departure and seemed content with it.  However, when the father Selkie left, the wife was extremely upset and couldn’t handle being alone… Is this another analogy to society which says that men seem to easier be alone?? 


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