Perspectives on Race

A Discussion about Events Concerning Race

Racism in Disney Movies

with 4 comments

So the other day I was at my friend’s house and he wanted to show me youtube videos that pointed out the racism in classic Disney movies. All you have to do is look up “racism in Disney” on youtube and a lot of videos will show up. Some of the footage that he pointed out to me was shocking because as little kids we never realized what the characters were actually saying. The two that stood out the most were Pocahontas and Dumbo. In Pocahontas, when the Indians were getting ready to fight the British settlers, the settlers were singing a song that actually had very racist and stereotypical lyrics. Also, in Dumbo there is a scene when black men were setting up the circus tent and they were also singing a song that spoke about them working all day and night because they never learned to read and write and how they are happy roustabouts. I understand how Pocahontas might have racist lyrics just because that was the mentality towards the Indians back then but I was just very surprised that I had never realized before.


Written by cristyb7513

January 30, 2010 at 12:30 am

Posted in Uncategorized

4 Responses

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  1. Disney has racist written all over it, or it did for a while at least. The fact that the first black disney princess was such a big deal supports this. What’s even worse is that this princess doesn’t have a name like all the other well known ones do such as Cinderella and Jasmine. Coincidence? I think not.


    January 30, 2010 at 1:00 am

    • The movie you’re referring to, The Princess and the Frog (originally intended to be named The Frog Princess but renamed due to people taking issue with the title), is also taking heat for being allegedly racist. The princess’s name that you pointed out as being blatantly different from that of other Disney princesses was changed from Maddy to Tiana in order to be “more ethnic.”


      January 31, 2010 at 3:48 am

  2. I saw this blog post and started looking at some of the youtube videos on this issue and I just never realized how much racism these movies have. They sterotype left and right, I was in shock. I mean when I was younger I dont think these movies swade me one way or another, I guess kids are too innocent to realize things like that but it does question why would they feed these ideas to children? It’s like they do not want to stop the continuance of racism. I think Disney should really be ashamed!


    January 30, 2010 at 3:29 am

  3. In respect to Disney movies it is not just racism that is scattered throughout their movies but other innuendos as well, such as the famous “sex” written in the dust of the Lion King stampede or of the naked women in the window in the Rescuers Down Under. Sometimes these things are intentional or placed discreetly in the movies by animators thinking its funny. The two most flat out racists things in Disney movies are the lead crow in Dumbo that is in fact named Jim Crow and Songs of the South which was deemed to be so racist that it was never released, but it what makes up the basis for the beloved attraction Splash Mountain. So yes Disney has a long history of rascism and other innuendos in their movies, some are not their fault, and others are. Hopefully in the future, starting with Princess and the Frog, these past wrongs will indeed be corrected


    January 30, 2010 at 3:39 am

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