Racism in Disney Movies

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ed lyrics are vastly clear as they depict the oriental society as crude and completely barbaric by citing erroneous and negative accounts of their culture. Although, the song has now been revised for its offensive lyrics, but the fact that it was there to begin with clearly shows the bad stereotypes and how it was propagated in earlier versions of the film. (Bernstein Studlar, 1997, p. 17) This deconstruction of oriental culture within western cinema was first brought to notice by Edward Said’s (1978) theory of ‘Orientalism’, according to which Orientals were portrayed as crude and savages in the media to promote the superiority of western ideology. The racist portrayal was not only restricted to the Middle East, but the general depiction of the minorities was indeed quite warped. For instance, in Pocahontas, the story has been turned into a heartwarming romance between an Indian girl and an Englishman, with the story ending on a heartwarmingly happier note, with both ethnicities finally living in harmony. On the other hand, the real events were not as delightful as the one shown in the movie, which clearly represents how misguiding these movies are for the children. In the end, the Indian servant and Pocahontas’ union with her white lover clearly shows the west’s perceived superiority, which is blatantly and colorfully projected on to the big screens for the young children. In reality, the Native Indians were systematically wiped out to help the white faction gain the upper hand over the region. a painful historical fact that was skillfully masked in the film. Furthermore, in several instances the Native Indians are openly referred to as savages, which is further detrimental in establishing an image for the child. Even in Peter Pan, the Native Indians are… As a matter of fact, the obsession with the notion of ‘happily ever after’ is not only contained within the west, but all over the world young girls and boys are ardent fans of Disney motion pictures. Although, parents may not find anything bothersome regarding the content that they are feeding their children through the movies, but analysts have discovered a number of nefarious undertones within the innocent storylines of their movies. Although, Disney has tried their best to remove all the aforementioned racist lyrics but the fact that they are still present on previous copies of the movies continues to make it alarming for parents. Even though, some parents have deemed the presence of these racist elements as completely unimportant, but it is an undeniable fact that children are highly impressionable and thus are greatly influenced by the things they see on television. Disney movies may cause them to establish erroneous pre-conceived notions about people who seem to possess the traits that are present in all the unfavorable cartoon characters. They may hear a black man speaking and immediately make the association that they are lazy and idle like the crows in Dumbo and even believe that all Native Indians are crude and have bad grammar. These pre-conceived notions will only make it difficult for them to associate or identify themselves with other races on a human level. Therefore, it is not healthy for parents to continually expose their child to such content as it narrows down the child’s horizon and he continues to view foreignness in a negative light and children belonging to minority groups may grow up to view western values and cultures as completely superior to their own.