The Unsettling Themes in Disney's Beauty and the Beast

Categories: Beauty And The Beast

In Beauty and the Beast, the story unethically depicts how a female is seen through the eyes of a man, and how women should shouldn't read books or it will give her ideas, it teaches children that since females are more irrational and emotional than men, then men have to watch over their every move. The story, a Disney classic, loved by everyone, is about a young woman named Belle who runs off after not wanting to marry a man obsessed with her and runs into the beast, who then grudgingly takes her in.

Eventually the beast becomes more comfortable with her, but doesn't let her roam some parts of his castle, he falls in love with Belle and turns into the man he always was behind the curse. The film expresses many immortal messages, which are conveyed to young audiences as normal. Beauty and the Beast is the artifact I chose because it displays rape culture, obsessive relationships, and the idea of not empowering women.

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In Beauty and the Beast rape culure is shown through the character, Gaston. Gaston is the hunk of the town, every girl is in love with him, but he has his eyes on one girl only. Gaston has the inability to take no for an answer, every time he asks Belle out she respectfully answers no and he always disagrees. Gaston is a misogynist, and his toxic masculinity poisons the provincial town Belle wants so desperately to leave. He always intimates in so many ways that he thinks he and Belle are destined to be together.

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'You should start thinking about¦ your own¦ children,' he says in the film, gesturing at his body rather than hers. When he says that he is signaling sexual content which is not fit for children, and could be taken in a horrible way to some women.

The portrayal of the characteristics of rape culture in the Disney animated princess movies does not change over time, but does fluctuate depending on the plot and the interaction of the characters. Another example of rape culture is the theme of romantic kidnapping. In Beauty and the Beast, Belle is kidnapped by the Beast and held captive in his palace. Even when she attempts to run away and is bombarded by wolves in the wilderness, the Beast comes to save her and yet imprisons her once more. However, this storyline of a happy ever after is flawed Belle was originally attempting to escape the Beast, her captor, and yet he is rewarded for taking her hostage once more. For kids to believe that kidnapping is romantic in any form at such a young age is extremely harmful to how they will grow up and learn to develop healthy relationships. Allowing a child to watch men take away the vehicle of choice for a woman teaches them it is exceptional and even normal.

Updated: Nov 20, 2023
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The Unsettling Themes in Disney's Beauty and the Beast. (2016, Apr 15). Retrieved from

The Unsettling Themes in Disney's Beauty and the Beast essay
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