Sunday, December 2, 2012

A Look Back

After reviewing all of my blogs, I am satisfied with the work I have completed this semester.  I am proud to be able to analyze fairy tales in pop culture, especially.  I grew up with Disney movies, and these stories are much more prevalent in American culture than the Grimm Brothers’ tales.  When I see these movies now, I understand their origins more and can watch them more discriminately. I understand the changes that Walt Disney made, like the more involved male roles. In Sleeping Beauty and Snow White, the prince plays a much larger role than in the Grimm tales. He is responsible for saving the princess, which is very different from the original tales. In the Grimm versions, it is more of a coincidence that he is present when the princesses wake up. I am now able to see these differences and realize that Disney made these changes to reflect his own propaganda. Many women say that Disney has raised their expectations of men to a point where they cannot be fulfilled. I believe now, because of this class, that Disney has made women lower their expectations of themselves instead. Disney wanted to portray male dominance in his movies, and as an educated viewer, I am more able to see that.

                Additionally, I am excited that I can more accurately view references to these tales in pop culture. Political cartoons are rather easy to understand at first glance, because their allusions are generally fairly obvious. Although the point they are making is more obscure, most people could probably pick out what fairy tale they come from. However, I think that I am more able because of my studies to understand the complete context of these cartoons. More impressively, I am able to see fairy tale stories and motifs in less obvious forms of media. For example, after recently viewing Silence of the Lambs in class, I am able to see the Little Red Riding Hood storyline. This is definitely not obvious unless one has studied fairy tales in depth. Relating Clarice to Little Red Riding Hood and Cannibal to the wolf is not an obvious connection, but the connection definitely exists.

                Overall, I am pleased with the knowledge that I have gained this semester. This class has given me a whole new appreciation for the fairy tales I heard as a child and a different viewpoint on the movies I see.  I have now have a more discriminating opinion of the very popular Disney movies, and do not have to be encircled by Disney’s appropriation.

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