Friday, 19 February 2010
The Disneyfication of Culture
When I first heard about this lecture I thought great, we're going to be talking about Disney. As a child I grew up watching the films and had probably every single Disney film there was. Even now that videos are no longer used I have replaced those copies with DVDs so imagine my surprise when the lecture we received talked about how Disney may not be what it seems.
With great relevance to the assignment at the moment, Hamid talked about how things can be portrayed to us and in a child like innocence we cannot see the true meaning behind it. Henry Giroux criticised Disney and their market aims to their young target audience arguing that these vulnerable children are learning about life through the eyes of Disney, which is something Giroux thinks is culturally incorrect.
Taking myths and Victorian fairy stories, Disney softened these and turned them into palatable stories. Built around the idea of happiness and innocence experienced as a child it is difficult to see the true meaning behind them.
What I found most interesting about the lecture was the wee film we watched at the end, discussing the issue that Disney films are not realistic. Disney can sell ideas through the images that they present to us which they describe as being dangerous because it is hard for children to distinguish between fairytale and real life.
The women conveyed in the film are all stereotypical of Disney to have the lack of ability to save themselves and feel the need to use their body to manipulate. Now although this may be true for some women, most women would laugh at this suggestion that they are incapable to survive without men.
In the film that we watched the example of women struggling was in Beauty and the Beast. As a child I used to love this film and never picked up on anything being discussed by these women! They talked about it being a platform of abuse - where the idea that the women is being abused and standing up to the man but then in the end running into his arms, undermining herself. Now I'm no feminist but I can see the point being made her, in saying that though I think that these women are reading far too much into this matter! For me this just raises the argument that adults see things completely different to children, which is fine, but life as a child is innocent and I'm sure Disney is the least of parent's worries in educating their children in the hardships of life.