Damsels GIRLS in Distress
Notes in this lecture are taken from the following study:
Damsels in Discourse: Girls Consuming ...
Identity Messages
“Identity messages circulate through
merchandise that surrounds young consumers
as they dress in, sleep ...
Toys
“On one level, Disney Princess toys inspire
children to replay remembered plots and recite
memorized scripts, providi...
How do Girls look
at relationships through
Disney Doll Play?
“The dolls index identity texts from
damsel-in-distress fairy...
“…Disney animated fairy
tales reduce heroines to
happy homemaker-inwaiting.”
How are Girls Displayed:
• …”often portrayed as dependent and innocent
(with sexual undertones) ingénues waiting for
a roy...
Requirement For Love:
BEAUTY
“From classic books to
popular media, the
consistent requirements
for any princess is that sh...
Relationship 411 Disney Style:

Gay is NOT OKAY
“Critical discourse analyses of play activity
showed that children regulat...
Princess Play
• “During Princess play, girls focused on
achieving beauty ideals and rejected play
scenarios that stretched...
“…Girls as well as boys
positioned male characters
as powerful and female
characters as weak, even
suicidal, victims.”
MARKETING GENDER ROLES
…”The Disney Princess films comprise five of the six
top revenue-generating Disney films of all tim...
So….
What is the idea of

Disney LOVE
that we are being sold?
Love At First Sight
Based on Appearances and
Abilities
Mostly White Love
Heterosexual Love
Based on Patriarchal Ideologies
Disney Love:
•
•
•
•
•

Women are Docile and Gentle
Men are Strong and Heroic
Women Need Saving
Men Rescue Damsels = Happi...
So……..
THIS is Love.
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So THIS is LOVE

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Disney Love
Damsels--- Girls in Distress

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So THIS is LOVE

  1. 1. Damsels GIRLS in Distress Notes in this lecture are taken from the following study: Damsels in Discourse: Girls Consuming and Producing Identity Texts through Disney Princess Play Karen E. Wohlwend Reading Research Quarterly , Vol. 44, No. 1 (Jan. - Mar., 2009), pp. 57-83 Published by: International Reading Association Article Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/20304573
  2. 2. Identity Messages “Identity messages circulate through merchandise that surrounds young consumers as they dress in, sleep on, bathe in, eat from, and play with commercials goods decorated with popular culture images, print, and logos, immersing children in products that invite identification with familiar media characters and communicate gendered expectations about what children should buy, how they should play, and who they should be”
  3. 3. Toys “On one level, Disney Princess toys inspire children to replay remembered plots and recite memorized scripts, providing explicit narratives that shape children’s play; on another level, the film scripts and characterizations convey more subtle narratives about identity and status that relate to global markets and societal beliefs about gender and childhood.
  4. 4. How do Girls look at relationships through Disney Doll Play? “The dolls index identity texts from damsel-in-distress fairy tales with princess victims and princely rescuers, a classic trope in children’s literature and play that “prepares the ground for the insertion of the little girl into romantic heterosexuality”
  5. 5. “…Disney animated fairy tales reduce heroines to happy homemaker-inwaiting.”
  6. 6. How are Girls Displayed: • …”often portrayed as dependent and innocent (with sexual undertones) ingénues waiting for a royal husband as life’s fulfillment” • “Older women are either backgrounded as loving (preferably deceased) mothers or, if powerful and independent, vilified as evil femme fatales or ugly hags”
  7. 7. Requirement For Love: BEAUTY “From classic books to popular media, the consistent requirements for any princess is that she must be beautiful.”
  8. 8. Relationship 411 Disney Style: Gay is NOT OKAY “Critical discourse analyses of play activity showed that children regulated each other’s gender performances through talk and actions that demonstrated their ability to adhere to the heterosexual matrix that ‘regulates gender and gender relations so that heterosexuality becomes the ‘normal’, right, and only way to be”
  9. 9. Princess Play • “During Princess play, girls focused on achieving beauty ideals and rejected play scenarios that stretched stereotypical male/female roles. • “…the importance of being pretty and the role it plays in creating femininities and masculinities provide another opportunity for locating the heterosexual matrix…”
  10. 10. “…Girls as well as boys positioned male characters as powerful and female characters as weak, even suicidal, victims.”
  11. 11. MARKETING GENDER ROLES …”The Disney Princess films comprise five of the six top revenue-generating Disney films of all time.” Re-releasing and Opening the Disney Vault Create Long Lasting Demand for Disney Products “These marketing strategies build breadth and depth in the market, creating widespread and longlasting demand for Disney Princess films and related products”
  12. 12. So…. What is the idea of Disney LOVE that we are being sold?
  13. 13. Love At First Sight Based on Appearances and Abilities Mostly White Love Heterosexual Love Based on Patriarchal Ideologies
  14. 14. Disney Love: • • • • • Women are Docile and Gentle Men are Strong and Heroic Women Need Saving Men Rescue Damsels = Happily Ever After A woman’s purpose is defined by her ability to find true love- at all costs.
  15. 15. So…….. THIS is Love.

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