Would you want your child to see a film like “Aladdin,” that may be just a harmless cartoon or a dangerous brain washer? There are positive messages and negative messages about each gender, some of the messages may get mixed together in a child’s mind making right versus wrong confusing for the young child. A positive example for men is when genie tells Aladdin to tell the truth. An example of a negative message about men is when Aladdin is trying to act “macho” as the prince. For women a positive message is to stand up for your self. A negative message is the exaggerated body figures and sizes. With all the positive and negative images from “Aladdin” in a young child’s head it may be hard for he or she to figure out what is good or bad.
In “Aladdin” there are messages that children should see because they promote a good idea. For example, when Aladdin decided to use his last wish to free Genie it shows that men can show affection to other men. Nowadays, you always see men fighting and battling, but never showing any love for each other it is good to see that they are showing little children it is okay to have love. It shows children that it’s okay to act “soft,” you don’t always have to wear the tough guy image. Another good message is when Aladdin finally tells the truth to Jasmine, the message is that honesty is the best policy. It tells kids that lying and lying makes it even harder to finally tell the truth.
It is one of the classic lessons that says telling the truth is always best because it saves you from more trouble in the end. A great message about men in “Aladdin” is that men should respect women, like when the first thing Aladdin mentions when describing Jasmine is her smarts not something shallow like her attractiveness. It shows kids that there is more than just looks in a human being you have to go deeper than the skin to find true beauty. It teaches children that caring for people regardless of looks or appearance is important. The positive messages give a good image for children to remember to tell the truth, or treat someone with respect.
With the positive messages of men there are also confusing negative messages about men for young children. When Aladdin lies to everyone about being a prince it doesn’t help him in his relationships because everyone loves him as a prince. Children believe that to get what they want all they need to do is lie. Children will not understand that lying can get you in more trouble than telling the truth. Another negative message is when Aladdin tries to play the “cool, tough and confident” prince. It shows kids that if you really want to be something cool you must act like something you aren’t.
It seems hard enough for children to find their own identity and this message doesn’t help because it gives them the idea that cool is a certain thing. One of the most absurd messages is that Jafar is shown tall, thin, dark and has a very deep voice. This is bad because kids may think that all dark people are evil which is a horrible idea of racism. Children should not see the color of an evil but just as the evil, skin color should not be related. Although there are positive messages there are negative messages about men.
For the women in “Aladdin” there are positive messages that young girls should see. For example, Jasmine chooses not to marry any prince that her father, the sultan, brings to her. This shows that girls can stand up for themselves and hold their own when faced with critical situations, like forced marriage. In cartoons you usually see the women dependent on a rich male, it is good to see that in cartoons women are shown as strong characters. Another example of a positive message for women is when Jasmine trusts Aladdin and Aladdin as a prince. It shows how women are trustworthy and can be trusted. It also shows that trust is an important aspect of love. When Jasmine refuses to marry any rich handsome man that is brought to her it shows she is not shallow. This shows how a women can make a living on her own with out the help of a huge paycheck and a man. It also shows that there is more to love than good looks, there are deeper attractions than only looks. The positive messages are good for young girls to see.
Although there are positive messages about women in “Aladdin” there are also dangerous messages. When Jasmine is to help Aladdin get the lamp back from Jafar, she uses very seductive and sexual movements to try and succeed in doing what she wants. It is scary to think that in a child’s cartoon there are messages of selling your body to get what you want. This is dangerous because a girl may begin acting sexually at a very early age and unknowingly. Although Princess Jasmine stood up for herself she is also dependent on men during certain situations.
After all these years women should be shown separately from men as individual humans. A young girl may think that the only way for her to succeed is with a man to help her. All throughout the movie all of the “pretty” girls are big eyed, have tiny feet, have full chests and are skinny as their necks while the “ugly” girls are shown gigantic. A girl always wants to be pretty and if by being pretty it means extremely skinny, then she may associate ugly with food and eating disorders may develop. This message seems as though it was made to discourage children and they may become very saddened over something that is not their fault.
With all the different messages given to children through the carton “Aladdin you can see how it may be confusing to the child about negative and positive. This film shows positive messages and negative messages about men and women. Because the movie has so many descriptions of good and bad the child may get confused about what to do in real life situation.
Courtney from Study Moose
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