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The Cultural Work Of Pixar

Decent Essays
Inside Out in a World Turned Upside-Down: The Cultural Work of Pixar’s Latest Motion Picture Inside Out, a Disney/Pixar animated film, centers around the life of Riley, an 11-year-old girl who endures a move to San Francisco that greatly impacts her emotional balance. The film features five characters - Fear, Anger, Disgust, Joy, and Sadness - who personify the five major emotions in Riley’s brain and how these feelings impact Riley. When Joy - the lead feeling character - aims to suppress Sadness in her entirety and, thus, prevents Riley from processing her sad feelings, Riley enters an emotionally distant and empty state. This film has been widely received, for it not only entertains its target audience of the younger generations, but also speaks to teenagers and even adults through its unique, yet accurate portrayal of how emotions in the brain function and the importance of staying in-tune with said emotions. The cultural work of Inside Out influences multigenerational understanding of mental health. In doing so, this motion picture challenges viewers to consider how complex emotional and mental problems can be, as well as encourages viewers to question the stigma associated with mental illness. To put it in context, the term “cultural work” is identified through a framework of looking at how a text is received by a culture, and how that text responds to the said culture. As Tompkins explains, in this view, novels and stories should be studied not because they manage
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