Critical analysis of the film Aladdin Yawen Ye
Disney movies have a target audience of young impressionable children. Many young children grow up watching Disney films, because they are regarded as ideal family movies to educate our new generation. However, although some movies on first glance are entertaining and educational for the young minds, it actually has many hidden messages that children do not realize are negative and believe that what they see is true. Disney movie contain a negative representation that are racist toward ethnic groups, sexism toward behavior and treatment of woman, and construct false realities that are destructive to the human dignity. In this case, there is no better example than Aladdin that disregarded the obvious depiction of careless racism toward Arabs seen in the illustration of the characters. In the film Aladdin, Arabs are portrayed as charlatans and thief who lean on violent or conniving artifices to sustain their living，and through countless scene depicted in the film, Arabs are stereotyped as a racial group have not advanced culturally, nor could they afford to because of their poverty stricken lives. When children watch film this, their minds are open, absorbing information as a sponge. The media captivate their attention on mediums as movies and tell them what the world like. In this case what they would believe about Arabs when they are watching Aladdin? According to the research of Lippi-Green in her essay Teaching Children How To Discriminate, we can find evidence that film and TV have a heavy impact how children viewing people. She claims “ television and movies industries have became a major avenue of contact to the world outside our home and communities. For many, especially for children, it is the only view they have of people of other races or national origins.” Therefore, just as the name of her article, Disney film like Aladdin teaches children how to discriminate among different people, even most of time it teaches children in a negative way.
The song “Arabian Night” that plays at the opening credit went through a change because it describes Arab people as barbaric. The original song described Arabian lands as a place ”where they cut off your ear if they don’t like your face. It’s barbaric, but hey it’ home” After much controversy and protest by Arabs, the song changed to “where it’s flat and immense and that heat is intense. It’s barbaric but it’s home” Unfortunately, the stereotype do not stop at the beginning of the film as far as there incorporation of it through the whole film. As we will see, the film portrays Arab in various scenes as a violent, dishonest race living in primitive society. Comparing to the living of royalty, these plots contains a implicit message that Arabs people are living in a social turmoil without any care or protect form the government, which imply the corruption of the Arabian government.
For example, the first “thief” stereotype the viewer is introduced to is the deceiving salesman, the bootlegger. He sells worthless objects, finding dozens of uses for his product just to convince the view to buy it so that he can make money. Everything he sells is fake or useless; he is out to rip people off. Just from this scene, has the Middle Eastern people being depicted as untrustworthy and conniving. In this case, millions of people across the world who have watched Aladdin will be viewing the Arab man as a character of dishonest, manipulating businessman who preys on the unaware. Nor only the merchants are depicted negatively in the film. The Arabian police, who supposed to be the represent of justice against evil, also are defaced and unreasonably lose their repute in the eyes of the audiences from the entire world. There is a scene that Aladdin trying to escape the...
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