Walt Disney Gender Roles Essay

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The representation of gender within Walt Disney films has been a significant issue since Disney first reached cinema and is still relevant in some of the more contemporary films. Although Disney has made some attempt to not stereotype genders, they have consistently created a dominant gender for the protagonist in the majority of films. Disney has tried to empower women as main characters in Mulan (1998) and more recently Brave (2012). Both films involve a female warrior figure who fights for a personal cause affecting their families’ lives. They are both fighting as strong female figures. But, their gender disallows them to fight as themselves; therefore they are both forced to change their identity. Disney has made some progress over the…show more content…
Some would agree that this better suits children in a contemporary society, but, others may argue that Disney still represents the genre of horror through the gender stereotypes in which it creates. For example the original tale of Mulan is a seventy-two lined ballad called “The legend of Mu-Lan” she takes her father’s place in the army, and after twelve years of service dresses up as a woman and exposes herself in front of the other men. The endings to the ballad are altered from Mulan marrying, going back to war or killing herself. (David Koenig, 2001, P.261). This differs from Disney’s Brave because according to a blog post in the Inquirer the story of Brave was influenced by film directors Mark Andrews and Brenda Chapman on their “experiences of their own families, combining that with their Scottish heritage and love of the country” (Anon, 2014) Brave could therefore be classified as an original Disney creation as it stemmed from the imagination of the

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