Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Evolution of the Disney Princess

'Princess grapes' photo (c) 2011, Selena N. B. H. - license:

I am grateful to be raising my daughter in this era of Disney princess...even while I am still a tad sour from being raised in the shadow of Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Snow White, etc.

My daughter dreams of being Rapunzel, Mulan, and Merida, all of them being lively female characters.  I am happy because these characters have their own personalities, their own flaws, their own dreams that aren’t *completely* wound up in snagging a man.  Sure these animated women still have larger than normal eyes, bust lines, and hairdo's...but we are making progress people.  If I could ask for my daughter to embody certain principles from each of the disney-fyied princesses, here would be my ideal recipe for her personality development (yes, I just made that term up):


'Rapunzel on the Fremont Bridge' photo (c) 2005, Matt Rubens - license:

* I would want her to have the ability to take care of her own protection as best she can like the Disney Rapunzel.  The image of her running around town with a frying pan brings me both fear and joy all at once.

* I would want her to be spending her day creating...I don’t care what she creates, I just want her to have the joy of co-creation in her life.


'Mulan' photo (c) 2011, mickey - license:

*I would want her to take pride in the gift set she has been given...even if it is not the gift set society tells her she should have.

* I would want her to respect her family and her legacy with the same sort of reverence the Disney Mulan does.


'Brave Premiere' photo (c) 2012, Eva Rinaldi - license:

* I would want her to be able to be herself and to stand separate from me...though I hope she won’t have to poison me like the Disney Merida, to achieve autonomy!

* I would want her to care about living her life more than searching for a husband.  ‘Nuf said.

All in all, I return to a place of gratitude that even in the Disney Princess World there is much progress towards equality in this day and age. 

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