Teaching Children How to Discriminate

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Teaching Children How to Discriminate Rosina Lippi-Green's article "Teaching Children How to Discriminate - What We Learn From The Big Bad Wolf" (1997) examines the discrimination and stereotypes toward different race, ethnicity, gender, religion, nationality and region that Disney presents in their animated films. Lippi-Green also points out the use or misuse of foreign accents in films, television and the entertainment industry as a whole. Such animated films are viewed mainly by children. Lippi-Green makes a central argument in which she says that children are taught to discriminate through the portrayal of the different accented characters in Disney films. Lippi-Green maintains her argument by concentrating on "three aspects of language use in Disney films" (87) that she had found through watching the different animated films made by Disney. She had viewed twenty-four films multiple times and analyzed characters from such movies for their use of different language in automatically creating a character. On page eighty- seven of her article she gives us her main points: the portrayal of African-Americans in the Disney films; "the way certain groups are represented---particularly lovers and mothers" (87) and the manipulation of French accents that can be considered as a positive stereotype but can result as to being "negative and limiting" (87) for that particular culture. Lippi-Green gives an in-depth look at the negative portrayal of African-Americans in Disney animations. She acknowledged the fact that the cartoon characters that have connotations to be from an African descent, are voiced over by actors that are also of African descent. These actors and the animated characters spoke in "African-American Ver... ... middle of paper ... ...rtatious, and mainly associated with food. Even the character names such as "Cherie and Lumiere" of "Beauty and the Beast" promotes the romantic nature that the French are stereotyped for. Through the representation of this culture, children would only learn to associate the mentioned stereotypes toward the French and only that. They would not consider other characteristics that the French are also known for, not necessarily the romance and the great French cuisine that we already know of. Having said this, what Disney produced as a harmless depiction of the French, could furthermore fuel of what could be viewed as a limiting representation of the French culture. Bibliography: Lippi-Green "Teaching Children To Discriminate" Hampton, Hampton Bluebbeell 1990
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