Comparative Critique

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As a journalist and critic for Time Magazine, James Poniewozik concentrates on how the classic fairytale of Cinderella has been reinvented multiple times to correspond with the viewpoints of feminist authors. Poniewozik claims in his article "The Princess Paradox" that "girls choosing the fairy-tale ending is not such a bad thing" (667). However Peggy Orenstein, a contributing writer for The New York Times, would completely disagree with that statement. Orenstein stresses in her article Cinderella and Princess Culture that the "princess craze" and "girlie-girl" culture is ruining young girls as they feel constantly pressured to be perfect (673).

Poniewozik and Orenstein have conflicting claims in their articles as both define Cinderella differently. Poniewozik does not see an issue with the Cinderella story and believes it does not have any negative effect on girls, while Orenstein would have to disagree because of her strong feminist beliefs. This leads Orenstein to believe that the "princess culture" does indeed have a negative effect on girls.

Peggy Orenstein clearly states and argues throughout her article that the "princess craze" is a world-wide phenomenon and is damaging young girls. The damage Orenstein is referring to is depression caused by girls feeling that they must fulfill the princess image, and when they do not, it makes them feel as if they are not good enough the way they are. Orenstein also goes as far to say that women who are "perpetually nice" are more likely to be depressed and less likely to use contraception. (673)

Both Poniewozik and Orenstein recognize the fact that large companies like Disney are responsible for pushing the princess craze. In Orenstein's article she notes the fact that Disney executives claim "that the princess is on its way to becoming the largest girls' franchise on the planet" (671). These large companies are distributing the princess products mainly because that is what sells and Disney executives also...
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