Many girls dream of their knight in shining armor, a perfect wedding, and a happily ever after ending. Disney princesses give them hope to find love and happiness along with emphasizing their want for the beauty and grace princesses illustrate. Authors of “Cinderella and Princess Culture” and “The Princess Paradox,” Peggy Orenstein and James Poniewozik respectively, agree that most girls like princesses. However, these articles convey differing parental opinions on lessons girls learn from princesses and the unfavorable effects this has at their young age. Orenstein describes her negative views on princesses through her experiences with her daughter and the knowledge of Andy Mooney’s business decisions on princesses.
People of all ages throughout the years are very familiar with the concept of Disney movies. Some notable classics of Disney are “Beauty and the Beast” which was released in 1991 and “The Little Mermaid” which was released in 1989. Among the children, the Disney princesses left a good impression on them like Cinderella from “Cinderella”, Pocahontas from “Pocahontas”, and Mulan from “Mulan”. However, many believe that Disney movies serve as a good influence to young audiences but people should know that Disney also has its flaws. Disney have showed negative portrayals of Disney princesses in their films especially when it comes to their usual unattainable beauty ideal and portraying their princesses as inferior to men.
Orenstein places blame on Disney, shaming them for taking advantage of the pre-existing princesses for their own profit. In becoming so focused on the negativity that she believes these princesses may impose, she doesn't realize the potential greatness that companies, like Disney, try to advocate. To some, princesses create dreams for girls and it gives them inspiration at a young age. It shows them to be brave, like Mulan or even strong-willed and persistent, like Cinderella. It gives developing guidelines for positive characteristics, this way, when they encounter difficult situations later on in life, they already have a premise for how to deal with it.
From its onset with its first feature-length animated film, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs in 1937, Disney has grown to become a worldwide phenomenon today. But over the years, various parent groups, scholars and film critics have accused Disney for creating shallow, stereotypical princesses whose ultimate aim was to find her 'prince charming ' and live happily ever after. In her article, “What’s Wrong With Cinderella?” in the New York Times, Peggy Orenstein expresses her concern over the effect of princess figures like Cinderella on young girls ' perceptions of themselves and how they should behave (“What’s Wrong With Cinderella?”). However, the later Disney films have gradually attempted to break away from this stereotype resulting in stronger female characters like Ariel, Mulan, and Elsa among others. Keeping this transition in mind, this paper uses semiotic analysis of four popular Disney films, namely, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937), The Little Mermaid (1989) and Mulan (1998) to depict the influence of societies ' changing perceptions of women on the portrayal of Disney princesses.
Amanda Putnam’s essay, “Mean Ladies: Transgendered Villains in Disney Films”, is a compelling piece on gender portrayal and views in Disney films. Putnam opened the essay with a personal anecdote about her daughter. Her daughter wanted a Disney movie without a “mean lady”, as in most Disney films the villains are scary, evil women. The real life evidence strengthened her claim that children are noticing the characterization of female villains in Disney films. The antidote was brought fill circle when she referred back to her daughter in the final paragraphs of her essay.
Everyone and their grandmother has watched Disney movies. Some of Disney’s most iconic movies are their modern day reinterpretations of common fairy tales and the princesses with in them such as Cinderella, Jasmine, Snow White, and Rapunzel. However, anyone with eyes can notice that all of their princesses no matter their background rhave one thing in common; They are all fashionably, sometimes impossibly, skinny. And by contrast, many of the villains particularly the female ones are seen as undesirable.Being undesirable, particularly in the case of Cinderella, is shown by making her stepsisters fat and ugly. That is the issue the author, Jane Yolen, focuses on in her poem Fat is not a Fairytale.
As society has changed in the seventy-three years Disney has been making movies, so have the animated films themselves. While many young girls love the princesses and look up to them, others view these characters as negative role models. Disney Princesses have always appeared in movies as young women who dress in elegant gowns, have sexy bodies and perfect hair. They are always paired with a prince who lives in a castle, meaning that he has a lot of money. This description of what the Disney Princess is like; give us a big concern in the influence this image is giving to the little girls.
Disney princesses have usually been shown through a traditional fairy tale concept, the damsel-in-distress in need of help and to be back but in line. These films represent the ideologies of gender which originated from the play Macbeth. However Frozen both challenges and reinforces the traits of a typical
In traditionally, princess defined can be encapsulated in a few concepts later, the king 's daugther, incredibly beautiful, and born to wating to hostage rescue . All over the world to the comic characters, or even video games like Mario, Princess are acting weak, sitting in the tower and wating for who will get her. Moreover, the princess image is a mirror image of women throughout history. In the childhood, people like a hero to rescue, but raised it seems a bit unfair to them. These girls do not have the right to decide their future, not determined love, occasionally being brought out as a reward for the prince or knight.
Who does not love Disney, with movies for all boys and girls alike? From Cars and Big Hero 6 to Cinderella and Mulan people love these types of movies and want more and more of Disney. On the other hand, people also criticize these movies endlessly. Peggy Orenstein argues that Disney is a huge influence on young girls. She believes that it pushed her daughter to want to play dress up and to be fragile or to like the color pink like every other girl because that is how girls are, they like to follow the example in front of them, but is that true?
Disney has successfully given viewers of their movies warm and comforting feelings because there is always a happy ending. Disney productions have also taught young children the difference between good and evil. Films such as “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs,” and “Cinderella” are two of their earlier movies that are vastly different, but share similarities as well. For instance, both Cinderella and Snow White are beautiful princesses that are forced to be maids and have similar antagonists in their stories, which are evil step mothers who are jealous of their step daughter 's beauty. In the Disney film,“Snow White,” she had been deprived of having any kind of relationship with the outside world.
I was actually quite disappointed to see such an old-fashioned frumpy-looking girl in the pictures. Isn’t that terrible? I was conditioned to expect the long-haired, doe-eyed, big-breasted girl from Disney, not a “normal” looking mermaid/girl!” (p.50), indicated in Sun and Scharrer’s research. Andersen’s The Seamaid lies in the same genre as the Grimm Brothers’ tales, meaning that the story consists of darkness, sloppiness and of course no happy ending. Disney wanted to create a family-friendly movie, resulting in producers beautifying the entire story.