Pretty Pretty Princesses: Femininity in Disney Princess Films
This presentation will examine ideas and defaults of gender norms such as female passivity in Disney films. The main focus of this presentation will be based on three Disney Princess films spanning through Disney’s Golden, Renaissance, and Modern film eras. I will be focusing on the following films: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937), Aladdin (1992), and Brave (2012). A Disney Princess film is classified as a film in which a primary role in a Disney animated film is held by a woman. Each film era is classified by what the collection of films from that era brought forward to animation. The Odyssey, a news website, notes the defining characteristics of the three film eras. The Golden Era brought forward the use of fairy tales and literature in films while the Renaissance period is classified by the return of such films. Finally, the Modern era is marked by purchases that expanded Disney such as Pixar and Lucas Films. This presentation is inspired by the desire to break boundaries in gender norms and a love for Disney. The Princesses in these films evolve from having a traditional role to an independent and modern role. For example in Snow White the Princess is focused on finding her prince and marrying. In Brave Princess Merida hates the idea of being married and fights against tradition. It is important to evaluate these films for more modern views of femininity to make sure that their influences on culture and society continue to move forward.