Impact Of Walt Disney On American Culture

“Keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because we’re curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths” (Walt Disney). Walt Disney grew up in Chicago, Illinois, where his family owned a farm, they then moved to Marceline, Missouri where he attended school and learned how to draw (Gale, Walter Elias Disney 2017). In the same source, mentioned that Walt Disney attended Chicago’s Mckinley High school, where he often published his cartoons in the school’s newspaper.

Walt Disney returned back in 1919 and than moved to Kansas City, where he worked as a commercial illustrator and made crud animal cartoons. “The great depression helped influence Walt Disney’s work and dream of making people happy” ( Mollet, “With a Smile and Song”..Walt Disney and the birth of the American Fairy tale). Walt Disney’s creations helped give people courage and happiness during hard times, and they also went along with what was happening in the world. In the article Disney Celebrates 90 Years Of Mickey Mouse, it tells us that one of Disney’s most well-known characters is Mickey Mouse, he represents everything that the company tries to give- happiness, fun, dreams, and the ability to bring family and friends together.

Mickey is also the Disney mascot (2018). Walt Disney’s goal was to bring people together to be happy during the time of the great depression, and continue to bring people happiness today. Disney created stories and movies that went along with what was happening in the world and then he would show the positive side of it.

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Walt Disney’s cartoon slips, books, and movie’s were in high demand when they came out, it gave the American people hope and dreams for a better life in the future. One of the most influential writers of the twentieth century was Walt Disney, and his works continue to have an impact on American culture today.

Walt Disney was born on December 5th, 1901, in Hermosa, Chicago, IL. According to the article Walt Elias Disney, Disney was very close to his mother growing up and regularly reminisced about his childhood on the farm as an adult. He also discovered his love for drawing during these years ( Yensid Retlaw, 2017). Walt Disney’s mother and his experience on the farm helped shape who he was and how he started drawing. In the same article Retlaw writes about how Disney decides to change his date of birth to enlist in the army (2017). According to the same source Disney began producing his own animated films and in 1922 established Laugh-O-Gram studio with Iwerks and a small staff of animators (Yensid 2017). Disney started out in a small business, but then he decided to create his own studio with his brother Roy. Yensid also stated, Disney married Lillian Bounds, who worked at his studio’s ink and paint department. The couple raised two daughters together, Diane and their adopted daughter Sharon (2017). Disney is very keen to adapting to change, according to the article “Walter Elias Disney” by Yensid, described how quickly Disney learned how to use the latest technological innovations, producing some of the first color cartoons using the three-color technicolor process (2017). Throughout World War I Disney tried to make his cartoons relate to what was going on at that time. In the same article Yensid describes how Disney was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1964 by president Lyndon B. Johnson (2017). That same year is when the construction began on a new park called Disney world. Disney would never see the park done because he was diagnosed with lung cancer and only had a few months to live. Throughout Disney’s life he made many creations that impacted many Americans, one cartoon in particular is Mickey Mouse.

Walt Disney had many famous works, two that are very well known are Mickey Mouse and Snow White and The Seven Dwarfs. According to the article Walter Elias Disney, Disney created many cartoons his first cartoon was Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, but later Disney “was forced to abandon the Oswald character to his distributors after a number of disagreements” (Yensid,2017). During the time Disney created Mickey he also created Donald Duck, Goofy and Pluto. Yensid also stated that as the 1960s approached, Disney continued to generate popular animated and live-action films often centered on historical or patriotic themes (2017). Disney loved making his dreams come to life and one of his dreams was to create happiness and meomeries that last a lifetime. The article Walter Elias Disney described Disney’s target audience varies from children, to tweens, to teenagers and even adults, practically anyone who is young at heart. Walt Disney is famous for many things, the piece that started his entire journey and the most loved is Mickey Mouse.

One of Walt Disney’s well known pieces is Mickey Mouse. According an article called Walter Elias Disney Mickey Mouse got off to a rough start, but the character finally gained attention with the release of 1928’s steamboat willie ( Yensid, 2017). In the same source Mickeys popularity grew due to his successful comic strip and he also has a fan club called Mickey Mouse Club (2017). Even today people are still huge fans of Mickey Mouse. Gale stated in Shinola and Disney Celebrate 90 Years Of Mickey Mouse With The Launch Of The Mickey Mouse Classic Collection that “ from the beloved Mickey Mouse Club to today’s Mickey Mouse cartoon shorts, the character’s optimistic outlook and endearing personality continue to delight fans around the world” (2018). Mickey Mouse gives many people hope in times of need and happy memories that will last them a lifetime. In the same source Mickey continues to serve as a global ambassador for The Walt Disney Company (2018). Many people love Mickey Mouse and think of him every time they hear something about Disney. Mickey is one of the many creations that has impacted people’s lives. One of Walt Disney’s well known creations is Snow White.

Snow white was the first movie Disney ever released. According to the article “With a smile and a song…”: Walt Disney and the birth of the American fairy tale Snow White was the “highest grossing film of 1938, earning more than $5 million in the first year of its release” (Tracey Mollet, 2013). Snow White helped many people including Disney, the film helped Disney get the amount of money he needed to create another film. The same source also states Snow White was created during the Great Depression, Snow white represents a lost culture, lost values, and a loss of the simple life that American society would never capture again (Mollet, 2013). Mollett also states that the songs throughout the movie represent kindness and patience, and overall to success for the future if a positive attitude is maintained. Snow White gave hope to many people just from the songs in the movie. As far as Disney’s impact on American Culture by creating Snow White and showing that even “Roosevelt tackled the burden felt by the inauguration address, stating that the only thing American public had to fear was “fear itself” (Mollet,313). This also connected with the narrative of Disney’s Snow White”. In the same article Mollet describes how Disney creates Snow White to connect with how the American people felt in society during the Great Depression. Snow White gave American people many reasons to be hopeful and follow their dreams even when things got hard because everything works itself out in the end. Walt Disney had a huge impact on American culture.

The happiness of American culture grew as Disney created more cartoons and movies. Disney is one of the most well known entrepreneurs in American Culture. According to the article 5 great Lessons Walt Disney Taught Us, Disney never put his passion behind him he always did what he loved which showed when he created movies that brought joy to other people’s lives (Joel Brown, 2012). In the same article Brown states “Walt Disney’s works teach us a lot of things, such as the value of love for friends and family, hope for the good and his most important lesson: good will always triumph over evil” (2012). Disney taught so many people how to be caring and dream big just through his creations. Joel Brown stated in 5 Great Lessons Walt Disney Taught Us that disney “was never content with what he had done because he always wanted to achieve more and grow with his dreams” (2012). Right after Disney finishes Snow White he immediately started working on bambi and then he went on to creating more comic strips of Mickey Mouse. Disney’s dreams of what could come next shaped the future of his company but also American Culture as he influenced many people with his creations.

“Follow your dreams and you’ll be at your best”(Walt Disney), Walt Disney believed you are at your best and most happy when you follow your dreams. Every creation Disney created was for the benefit of American culture. Disney created movies and cartoons of whatever was going on in that time period, he made the American people feel happy and gave them hope no matter what event was happening. Ever since Disney created Mickey Mouse, he started impacting the world. Mickey Mouse was the start of Disney’s journey to helping others, through comics of Mickey, Pludo, and Goofy to the first animated films in color. Walt Disney saw happiness and life time memories come to life with his creations. Disney’s goal even today is to create endless happiness and memories for others and not to be focused on just yourself. Disney taught so many life lessons through his movies and cartoons. Walt Disney shared his happiness with the world and is still impacting American Culture today.

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Impact Of Walt Disney On American Culture. (2021, Apr 03). Retrieved from

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