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Fairy tales are used to teach people, especially children, the principles of life. They teach them the morals, but they support racism, introduce negative stereotypes in girls and also show strong sexual exposures to the young audience. According to Rojek (125), fairy tales were originally meant for entertaining adults.They were usually told during social gatherings in the field and other meeting places of adults.
Disney films, on the other hand, are so different from fairy tales. Disney films’ major audience is the young children. Disney films are more educational than just entertaining. In Disney films, there are no negative stereotypes for the girls, and in most cases, there is no kind of racism that is revealed. They present us a picture that females are no longer weak like it is depicted in the traditional fairy tales. The following section will discuss these effects.
Effects of Disney on original fairy tales and their morals
Disney films create ways in which there are discussions between children and adults about certain scenes portrayed in the films. Most of the traditional fairy tales would not display scary content, such as rape and death, unlike in the Disney films. Children are too young to understand the concept of death, and after watching the traditional fairy tale, many of them do not even discuss the issue of death with anyone, neither their parents nor their friends.
But after watching Disney death scenes, they start discussing the irretrievable death with their friends and adults. They may also think over why people grieve after their beloved one dies as well as other death consequences. Disney films depict other topics that seem to be difficult and severe to the parents to explain to their children. After these scenes have been covered in the movies, everything becomes easier to explain and understand.
Watching Disney films containing scenes that have real life situations enable children to have rough ideas of reality after they experience a closely related situation in their lives. For instance, if a certain Disney film shows that the rude people are punished, the children will grow up with the knowledge that if they are rude, they will be punished because any rude person deserves to be punished. Some of the Disney films depict horrible scenes, such as death.
They produce a negative effect on the audience. The messages sent to the children may appear ambiguous and confuse them because they do not have enough capability to understand every concept. These films are carefully planned from the already existing fairy tales. In the process of planning, Disney brings out the idea of real versions as well as ideas that are meant to educate the audience.
Traditional fairy tales were written in a manner that would reflect the history of a particular place such as America, for example. In the Disney movies, the history is distorted and simplified into easier ways to be better understood and appear playful because their major role is to entertain the audience. The social activities that are pre-existing in the traditional fairy tales are deconstructed until the Disney movies bring out different meaning.
The clever audience is capable of pointing out the underlying message from the deconstructed film. The audience has to come up critically with the meaning of some of the used symbolic contents. This is different from the traditional fairy tales since the meaning of a certain tale was normally represented by images that subsequently revealed it. According to the tradition of the fairy tales, the ideas interpreted in the Disney films do not adequately present the original meaning.
This limited interpretation makes these films unreliable for critical studies and discussions because they contemporary show a low culture entertainment. Some of the deconstructed theories that make up Disney films purpose just to entertain and distract the audience. The audience normally becomes manipulated by the perception that would occur in it after watching the film, and consequently, the behavior differs between the audiences.
Fairy tales were normally shared orally, and historians referred this as the sacred space. Since they were saturated with the meaning, the listener’s final meaning depended on the story teller. This made fairy tales important and unique. This brought members together after the meeting when they came up with particular missions to carry out. This is different from the Disney films because an audience can watch them alone. At some point, it is difficult to grasp the meaning of the deconstructed sentences. This privatization has violated almost all the communal aspects of action after the fairy tales were communicated to them.
Besides being a form of communicating moral and social values, traditional fairy tales were also a rite of passage. This made the audience to clearly understand various important elements about life and its valuable truth. After the alteration of the stories by Disney, the audience usually has to figure out the meaning of the films. Disney has changed one of the major elements and the narrator’s point of view that is contained in the traditional fairy tales. Fairy tales used to praise the traditions and the social practices, while Disney films show some effects about the US political issues. Disney presents political ideas using symbols through the narratives and the characters used in the films.
Fairy tales normally have a particular message that they teach, thus certain morals are taught, and the message sent has some sort of cautions and warning against dangerous life situations to the young audience. Disney films brought changes and reveal that everyone has the right to be the superior person, and none is inferior by nature. In the traditional fairy tales, women always play the minor role, while men dominate them. Disney films scenes have made their audience to have clear understanding of the life concepts which are not portrayed in the most traditional fairy tales. Disney films can be used as forms of education to both children and adults.They can also be used as ways of counseling them especially at home.
Disney films have really made a lot of changes in the traditional fairy tales. They alter the meaning of the traditional fairy tales, and therefore, the ideas have to be explained to the children by the people around them, especially adults, who also guide them. Adults should interpret the meaning of the deconstructed scenes which have been watched so that they can understand them. Fairy tales used to discuss gender roles in different critical ways and shape the audience values. Disney films, on the other hand, depict altered work that may confuse the audience or children values and morals. This is because the meaning of the ideas presented in the films is not always the same they seem to be. The young people later require explanation from their parents since the imageries and vocabularies used appear to be difficult for them.
Rojek, Chris. “Leisure Studies.” Disney Culture 12.4 (1993): 121-35. Print.