Perspectives on Race

A Discussion about Events Concerning Race

Can we just have our cartoons… Disney racist??

with 10 comments

I have watched numerous Disney movies throughout my childhood and occassionally I still pop a DVD in when I am bored. I found this video to be kind of sad and disheartening. When I took an intro sociology course last semester we touched on racism in the movie The Lion King and as an adult it made me view the movie differently. I think as children we take things for face value and don’t really look for the “hidden message” or possible undertones. Like anything else if you watch something with an intent to find then you will seek it out. I don’t think we should ruin cartoons for little children especially classics like The Jungle Book and The Lion King. Im sure if we look hard enough there are prejudice remarks toward all races and genders. Also, a lot of the movies shown in this clip are even before my time when the world had a different point of view. I do think it is good that they take a few questionable segments and clips out of the old movies just to make everything politically correct.


Written by rhenf1989

September 17, 2009 at 5:54 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

10 Responses

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  1. I watched the clip you posted, and this makes me sad as well- I definately have a different view of these movies after having read your message. It is sad to think that childhood favorites are laced with racial stereotypes and prejudices; but then again, what isn’t these days?


    September 17, 2009 at 9:47 pm

  2. I agree with you that there is racism in the Disney movies we watch when we were children. But most cartoons and movies are like this they have lots of stereotypes in them. Also i liked the video you posted it gave a good view of racism in cartoons.


    September 18, 2009 at 12:20 am

  3. I’d have to say that I don’t entirely agree with the subject at hand, that Disney is racist. Yes, there are superficial stereotypes that differentiate the different races like Latino or Asian in the characters, but in no way do I think it was meant to be portrayed negatively. Disney is family/children friendly, and you can’t say that Disney Didn’t* try to incorporate different cultures into their cartoons. I think if all of Disney’s characters were white, that issue would be brought to the table. Also, let’s not forget that children are simple-minded, so in order to tell what race a character is, Disney had to make it obvious to their young audience, in a way that would distinguish the characters’ ethnic backgrounds.


    September 18, 2009 at 2:53 am

  4. I think this issue is interesting it reminds me of the first time I was told here are hidden sexual messages in Aladin as well as the Lion King. My reaction was “what are you for real?” But apparently there are also racial issues that people see in these cartoon movies for kids. I say that we should still let our kids watch them because I was completely oblivious to this when I watched them as a kid. But if I thought that my child could pick up on it then that would be another issue because I would not want to reinforce any stereotypes or racial connotations to my children.


    September 18, 2009 at 3:22 am

  5. I watched the video and can see where there could be some racial issues tied into these movies but I think the guy who made the movie was a little over the top. Some of the statements or clips he compared the movies to were questionable. I agree with what you said about if you watch anything with intent to find something wrong you will always find something and I feel like that’s what is wrong with our world today. Even though racism is still looming there are always those people that go out looking for racism and it ends up with everyone “being a racist”.


    September 18, 2009 at 1:20 pm

  6. Yeah this is a very interesting topic. I can definitely see the racial issues with those clips, but like someone said earlier, I really don’t think that was Disney’s intent. It is a very intriguing subject though, and I definitely feel children are more susceptible than we might think. I still plan on letting my children watch these Disney classics, but I am certainly glad they took the scenes from the end of the youtube video out of their movies. Those were just ridiculous.


    September 18, 2009 at 3:37 pm

  7. I personally think that at this age, to know that there are many racist messages in Disney is just wrong. I grew up with these movies and was shocked to know all the racism, like for example in the Dumbo movie..the three crows represent Jim Crow laws! Such things like that could ruin a childs perception on life! I feel that even though there are messages like this, we need to not ruin our future generations from such timeless classics!


    September 18, 2009 at 8:53 pm

  8. Being that Jungle Book is one of my favorite movies i really do not know what to say about this LOL. But Disney has been accused of everything from racial to even gender discrimination. and if take the time to look into Disney’s earlier works, you can very well see the imperfections to its movies.


    September 20, 2009 at 1:12 am

  9. I was really surprised after watching this video. I knew that Disney had several hidden messages in films but I didn’t realize that racism is one. There were two clips that struck me the most. The “Jim Crow” character and the video of the little black centaur acting as a servant to the big white female centaur.


    September 20, 2009 at 2:29 am

  10. I totally agree with you when you said “I don’t think we should ruin cartoons for little children especially classics like The Jungle Book and The Lion King”!! Some clips made me wonder if Disney really meant to be racist, especially the clip that was removed from a recent video.


    November 11, 2009 at 8:26 pm

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