But, if it’s a choice between YOU and ME in my daughter’s life. Well, I pick ME. Because I add quality and you, well, you don’t. When your snotty, bratty, disrespectful banter comes out of my daughter’s mouth – well, to be completely truthful, I feel like slapping her. I don’t. But, really, it shouldn’t take so much effort to stop the impulse.
Also, you’re not really age-appropriate no matter how small you make the t-shirts or commando market to Kindergarteners and pre-schoolers.
She’s right – Hannah Montana (and none of the other programming marketed at tweens) is not appropriate for a 6-year-old, IMHO. In a few years? Sure, but by then, tweens will be on to the next big thing.
As an aside, if you treat child-rearing as an expression of your politics, (if you read Tracee’s blog, you know this is true about her, she makes no bones about it) all I can say is that you are in for a rude awakening in a few years.
But, that’s not what I wanted to talk about. Later in the rant, she links to an older article in the LA times by Rosa Brooks.
At first, I thought it was satire. I read it three times to make sure. SHE’S SERIOUS:
You didn’t think Disney was going to stand idly by while you engaged in those little feminist critiques, did you now? Pause for a moment to consider the fate of the princesses’ mommies in those Disney movies. “Cinderella” and “Snow White”? Mothers killed off by mysterious illnesses. “Beauty and the Beast,” “The Little Mermaid” and “Aladdin”? Mothers all missing; presumed dead.
Disney really has it in for mommies: Even when you leave princess-land, it’s the same pattern. Bambi’s mom? Shot dead by a hunter. Nemo’s mom? Eaten by a barracuda. Of all the major princesses, only Sleeping Beauty (a.k.a. Aurora; like all criminals, she often goes by an alias) has a nuclear family, not that it does her any good. But given Disney’s track record, I wouldn’t want to underwrite her mother’s life insurance policy.
Now, I’ll admit that it is kind of interesting that in so many Disney stories, the mother is absent or killed off. More on that in a minute. But to infer that Disney does this as reaction to feminist critique?
Sigh. It’s so stupid, I can’t even mock it.
My theory is more literary (hello? not everything is political. In fact, few things that matter in life are).
There are few things in the world the evoke more sympathy than being a motherless child. Not to put too fine a point on it, but fatherless (either in reality or in practice) children are a dime a dozen. And they have been that way for centuries, thanks to wars and workplace dangers. It’s just the way of the world that we have more sympathy for the motherless child than the fatherless child.
I’m sure there are other reasons, but these fairy tales span centuries, and the theme has been around far longer than feminist theory. Smarter people than me could try to explain why the mothers all die in fairy tales, but if you try to blame it on the patriarchy without backing it up, I will have to remain in mocking mode.