Essay about Disney vs. Masculinity

1387 Words Apr 21st, 2011 6 Pages
Joseph Delia
Spring 2011
Emile Zaslow

Disney vs. The Future of Men: How have our beloved animated movies affected the men of yesterday, today and tomorrow.

Thesis: The constructs of masculinity found in most Disney movies create an environment of images that shape and define what young boys view as masculinity. By presenting sexist relationships, physical expectations, and violence and dominance to represent power, young boys are left feeling emotionally unattached and physically inadequate.

How many Disney movies did you see as a child? How many of those movies did you watch over and over again? And how many of the songs you so lovingly watched over and over again can you still sing today? The Walt Disney Company has
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After a while these images begin to shape what young boys know and what they understand about the world around them. This is not an immediate effect, but instead a slow accumulative effect that is much more subtle than we are aware of. One of the biggest problems with this process is that the Disney conglomerate has spanned over nearly five generations, so no one thinks to challenge the idea that an animated Disney movie is a great way to entertain children while simultaneously sharing with them a piece of traditional culture. One of the most destructive ways in which classic animated Disney movies are providing young boys with false and distorted images of masculinity, are the ways in which men are shown in relationship to women. Most Disney movies revolve around a heterosexual relationship containing a hero and heroine. Feminists have studied what these characters tell girls about themselves, but it is just as important if not more important to understand what these movies are telling boys about how real men interact with and treat women. Often the message to boys both explicitly and implicitly is that men should view women as objects of pleasure or as servants to please them. A perfect example of this misrepresentation is in the movie Mulan. In Mulan, and entire song called “A Girl Worth Fighting For”, explains what a man is looking for in a woman. Some of these traits include cooking, cleaning, and looking beautiful for her husband. This quote
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