Disney Films And Children's Fairytales

analytical Essay
2291 words
2291 words

According to Giroux (1996), animated movies are a part of children’s culture. Children’s culture consists of entertainment, artifacts, myths, etc. that are based around the notion of what it means to be a child. Animated movies, particularly Disney films, encourages the child’s imagination and fantasy to be enhanced, creates a drive within them to go on adventures and helps them develop an aura of innocence. Animated films are “teaching machines” (Giroux, 1996, p. 66). Disney films teach children about specific roles, values and ideals and also take them through the world of enchantment. It helps them to understand who they are and what it means to be a part of the society and an adult environment (Giroux, 1996). Disney characters are a reflection …show more content…

They play a role in putting emphasis on themes such as a woman’s passive nature and their beauty. Fairytales are a mode of enhancing the difference between the genders and supporting the dominant gender. Disney films and children’s fairytales put a high amount of emphasis on the theme of feminine beauty ideal (Baker-Sperry & Grauerholz, 2003). It is a social construct that believes that the greatest asset a female has is that of her physical attractiveness and a female should strive to achieve and maintain it. This leads to one believing that females are oppressed, devalued and objectified, particularly in a patriarchal society (Baker-Sperry & Grauerholz, 2003). According to Baker-Sperry and Grauerholz (2003) women find beauty to be empowering and like to engage in rituals that enhance their beauty. Bordo (1993) believes that woman and adolescent girls achieve a high social status and maintain their self-esteem by engaging beauty rituals through the course of the day (as cited in Baker-Sperry & Grauerholz, 2003). The importance of female beauty ideal and physical attractiveness in society is emphasized in many Disney films and children’s media. According to Chyng (2001) many films emphasize the importance of sexuality and often-female characters are portrayed as overly sexual (as cited in Towbin, Haddock, Zimmerman, Lund, & Tanner, 2004). …show more content…

Females are portrayed as exotic and this characteristic is often associated with princesses of color. The ‘Whiteness’ of women is often portrayed as the center of attraction (Lacroix, 2004). ‘White’ women are associated with having a delicate nose and small mouth; are conservative and romantic. The coloured princesses are portrayed as erotic, sexual, harem-esque and exotic. Jasmine is portrayed in an exotic and erotic manner. She is seen wearing a harem-esque cut-off blouse, which exposes her waistline and shoulders. She is seen wearing pants having a slit in the middle, which exposes her thigh. Pocahontas is seen wearing a costume associated with her ethnicity but puts high emphasis on her physical characteristics. The white princesses are seen as having more demure and conservative dressing styles where as the colored princesses are wearing costumes that give high importance to showing off their sexuality (Lacroix, 2004). White women are portrayed as being more demure whereas the colored princesses are portrayed as being more physical and athletic. In present times, high emphasis is still being placed on white princesses and portrayal of sexual stereotypes is still seen. Beauty is often associated with depiction of a women’s sexuality. The portrayal of white and colored princesses has a significant impact of females and young girls. Females and girls associate these

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that animated movies are a part of children's culture. disney films teach children about specific roles, values, ideals, and take them through the world of enchantment.
  • Explains that disney movies, books, etc. reflect the ideologies of dominant cultures, their worldviews, and their idea of self-image.
  • Explains that disney films and children's fairytales emphasize the theme of feminine beauty ideal and physical attractiveness in society.
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