Thursday, October 6, 2011

A Response to Vinny's Argument

Vinny, I understand that you believe that you should not read to deeply into cartoons and movies; however, subliminal messages intentional or not have a proven effect on the developing mind of a child. When I was younger I did avoid the sun due to a fear of being different than other white children, and social media of the time did not help to ease this fear. Disney movies are a perfect example of the stereotypes placed upon women. Aladdin is a perfect example of racism found in Disney movies. The first character we are introduced to is a stereotypical Arab "bootlegger" salesman, then we meet Aladdin a stereotyped Arab peasant stealing bread, wearing nothing but a vest, a fez, and harem pants.These stereotypes place an image of Arab people into the mind of young impressionable children. Aladdin, Jasmine, and The Sultan are fairer skinned than any other Arab character in the movie. All of these characters are or will become a person of power. These subtle changes in skin coloring can teach children that fairer skinned people have more power, or are held in a higher regard. There are many other characters in famous Disney movies that are hurtful stereotypes, such as the Indians in Peter Pan, the Crows from Dumbo, King Louie from The Jungle Book, and more. These racist stereotypes can had a profound effect on children. The original Disney Princesses are all white, about a Size 1, and need to be rescued from the clutches of evil by a muscular white male. That is all but Jasmine and Pocahontas. Yet, still Pocahontas falls for a white skinned, blonde haired, blue-eyed male. In a modern world where racism is still a predominate factor in children's lives movies like these tell girl's it is okay to stereotype, that you should be a size one, that you need men to survive, but it is up to that child to discern wrong from right. However, in a world plagued by vanity it is hard for children to see that they do not need to be conformists. These movies are meant to entertain, but they have subtle racist overtones and hurtful stereotypes. Games like Grand Theft Auto might not make children violent, yet there are proven studies that show that children who play first person shooter games on the Wii, or on XBox Connect are more likely to act out physically. This is due impart to the fact that to kill their enemies the children have to pull a real trigger. This conditions children that it is okay to act out physically. Whether intentional or not, the imagery chosen for a film, or video game sends a message to it viewers brain. Children, and girls especially, are impressionable. This racist and stereotypical media is allowed. Plain and simple. Children have access to a plethora of information in today's American society. Exposure to any kind of racist imagery or stereotypical cartoon depictions will shape how a child acts or thinks.


courtney_xoxo said...

I disagree with the way you are going about the movies. At such a young age, children are not going to be trying to pick out who is white and skinny and who is a bootlegger etc. They are just so into the movie they don't care about that kind of stuff.

Vinny said...

Also, would we rather our children grew up with dreams of being rich beautiful or of being ugly poor and fat? I think rather than looking them as movies about pretty white princesses we should look at them as beautiful women, cause woman can be beautiful regardless of their skin tone. I think when you begin to label her as a white princess, instead of just a princess, is when it becomes racist. If you set out looking for something you're more likely to see that desired result.