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Disney princesses offer good, awful examples

By Katie Johnson
On April 8, 2010

Several people argue for and against the statement that Disney's princesses are a bad influence on young girls.

I can't decide if I agree or disagree with this, so I will cover both sides of the issue at hand. I only see problems with a couple of the princesses who are definitely creating a bad rep for the rest of them. Jasmine, the Arabian princess in Aladdin, starts her "bad girl" streak with her costume choice: a midriff-baring top and over-done make-up.

Her choice in clothing is not the only thing about her that proves her "bad girl" personality. Jasmine attempts to seduce Jafar near the end of the movie. I don't know about you, but I think it could have easily turned into an outlandish PG-13 sex scene at that point.

I get a strong feeling that Jasmine must have been a teenager going through puberty. First, the skanky outfit, and on top of that, her attitude is totally seditious. She raises her voice to her father on multiple occasions and gives him the classic 16-year-old girl attitude. After that, she sneaks out of the palace to be with a boy, who is also a street rat. Gasp!

I see a pattern in most Disney princesses, because Pocahontas and Ariel also disobey their fathers to be with boys. This is suggesting to young viewers it is okay to break the rules as long as you are doing it for "love."

Jasmine isn't the only princess with odd qualities. Cinderella has a weird thing with small rodents, that may or may not have rabies, and Snow White is living with not one, not two, but seven men. Other than that, these girls are pretty nice.

Oh, and if you count Mulan as a princess (she's not usually on the paraphernalia), she too disobeys her father, all while dressing in drag. I'm no expert, but I highly doubt that cross-dressing is the way to get Captain Shang's attention.

Each princess has some good qualities, well, except for Aurora, aka Sleeping Beauty, but in her defense, she really does just sleep during the majority of the movie.

Cinderella and Snow White both befriend forest creatures, and Belle tames a psychopathic mutant beast man. Jasmine accepts Aladdin for his poor stealing self, and Ariel only rebels against her father in the name of love...and curiosity.

Pocahontas does good by trying to learn about the strange new settlers before judging them. She also puts John Smith in his place when he calls her people savages, and then educates him on the colors of the wind and the spirits inside inanimate objects. She does this said "educating" while asking him strange questions about bobcats and the blue corn moon, all mixed together in one popular song.

Snow White and Cinderella must have been great friends, because they both cleaned enough to compensate for everyone else, and both were slaves of evil older women. And Belle doesn't lower her standards for anyone, not even Gaston the ladies man.

I see the good and bad things about each Disney princess, but honestly, I say the argument should be put to rest. These princesses are not meant to be analyzed or even taken seriously. There is not an increasing rate of young (and I mean really young) female criminals, and I don't see toddlers sneaking out or disobeying authorities in the name of love.

These princesses are meant solely to entertain young girls, and they definitely do their job, regardless of how us big kids see them.


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