stultifying effects of social proprieties

James Turrell's The Light InsideLess fairy tale than fable about the consequences of collective hypocrisy, Andersen’s story bears a message that has become a proverbial truth… Choosing to ignore what is in plain sight and blindly acting as if there were nothing wrong are the targets of Andersen’s satirical barbs. That it takes an “innocent” child to divine the truth that “His Majesty” is unable to discern is a reminder of the stultifying effects of social proprieties and the way in which culture and civilization produce duplicity and hypocrisy.

The Annotated Classic Fairy Tales, Maria Tartar on The Emperor’s New Clothes