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Shauna O’Brien Professor Keyes English 101 December 12, 2011 “The Dream that you wish will come true”: Disney’s Positive Effect on Children “The same movie from yesterday! Ariel is my favorite!” the five years old me pleaded. As my mother presses rewind for the third time that week, she replies “Are you sure? Maybe you can watch one of the newer movies Aunt Laura bought for you”. “No” I respond simply, because my mind was already lost in a day dream of finding my Prince Charming. As the familiar soundtrack started playing, so did the comforting magical feelings. An immense part of my childhood memories revolve around Disney whether it was singing the songs in long car rides, flying to Disney World or pretending to be the Little Mermaid while swimming in the pool. As a child I innocently declared my favorite movie The Little Mermaid and to this day it has not changed. Many parents debate that Disney movies are highly inappropriate because of its use of gender roles, stereotypes and racial undertones. On the other hand countless parents encourage children to enjoy and embrace the lessons taught by the enthusiastic animations. Although Disney characters display poor characteristics whether their dependent, needy or intimidating overall they are beneficial to a child’s development. Numerous people debate that Disney movies have a more negative effect on children. They argue that it portrays false, harmful gender roles, and racial undertones. For example, many discuss how the little mermaid influences little girls. Should it be a surprise that a child that has enjoyed The Little Mermaid might think that it was okay to lie to her father? Should it be a surprise if she asked her friends to cover for

almost all the participants were able to identify which movie a classic quotes were from. Eric falls in love with Ariel with her body language not her mind. Meanwhile. Every college student in the poll remembered watching and enjoying at least one Disney movie as a child. Also. RPI student Chase Crawford states that Disney movies are “Positive times a million. Although there was not a clear outcome to the survey. She lives with seven men and is the only one doing house work. your rainbow will come smiling through. Kyle from Dean College believes Disney movies are “positive when the children are young but when you . Snow White is a poor role model because she portrays gender roles. children and elders alike. there was one obvious relation. It also teaches children that if they do the right thing they will be rewarded and everything will be happy and good “. She cooks and cleans happily while the seven dwarfs go to work. and someday. Cinderella is argued to be a poor role model because she falls in love with a prince after only one night of knowing him. there was a split opinion on whether these movies were a beneficial influence or not. Disney movies were originally created from children.O’Brien 2 her. if you keep on believing. Disney encourages pursing your dreams and emphasizes a happily ever after. like loyalty and friendship. It teaches you values. they have to be silent. No matter how your heart is grieving. the positive messages are overwhelmingly evident. the dreams that you wish will come true” (Facebook Survey). In a poll taken by college students. It also teaches little girls that in order to get your prince. Quotes such as “A dream is a wish your heart makes when you're fast asleep… Have faith in your dreams. Although there are many examples of the negative impressions Disney portrays. but have successfully managed to inspire the hearts of everyone. supporting lies that are told to do things that are absolutely against parental edicts? Should it be a surprise that a little girl might think she could be in love with a boy she had never talked to and had seen only once or twice and only at a distance? Should it be a surprise that lies are okay and risking the lives is okay? (Movie Messages) The little mermaid has been seen to encourage rebelling and a false sense of body image.

We were raised on Disney movies from Snow White to Cinderella. We were taught to believe that every girl is a princess and deserves a prince. and we learned more than a few simple lessons in love.O’Brien 3 get older you realize certain innuendos that the older movies have so it might be construed as negative but. you will always have a happy ending.” Overall children enjoy these movies for the fairy tale ending. Pinocchio teaches that lying is wrong and Lilo and Stich highlights the importance of family. Several people in support of Disney argue that children are not even picking up on any inappropriate topics. as well as her own happily ever after ending (A Disney’s Princess Guide to your not so happily after). “when I was little I didn’t even think if these different ways the Disney movies are portraying girls and women…when you are little you don’t even think about this” (Disney’s Influence on Kids). Overall what children look for is the positive messages that no matter what challenges life throws at you. . I’d consider it to be more positive than negative because kids need hope and if they believe in something then that is so much better than the reality. from Sleeping Beauty to Beauty and the Beast. It’s all about perspective. Cinderella inspires one to follow their dreams. They need to believe that if they grow up to be a good person that everything will be okay.

hercampus.winmentalhealth.com/psychology/docview/884455010/13381168F84782DCCD D/4?accountid=6199 http://www.O’Brien 4 Work Cited http://accustomedchaos.wordpress.html http://meganbauer.com/2009/12/01/disneys-influence-on-kids/ http://search.php .com/love/disney-princessguide-your-not-so-happily-ever-after http://www.springerlink.com/moviesmessages.com/content/ur0122v877061r2j/ http://www.com/su/1rud7E/www.head-cleaners.com/childrens_movies_media_effects.stumbleupon.com/disney-movies-and-lack-of-positive-female-influence/ Facebook Survey of both male and female college kids http://www.proquest.

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