Gender Roles In The Little Mermaid

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So what are gender roles? A role is a set of expectations for the way individuals with certain social identification will act in certain situations (Damsels in Distress: A Textual Analysis of Gender Roles in Disney Princess Films). Gender identity is when people begin to believe that they are female or male and feel their femininity or masculinity (The Effect of Cartoon Movies on Children 's Gender Development). How individuals behave is socially enforced and valued. We inherit our gender roles mostly from our households and the structure we are raised around whether it is done consciously or not (The Effect of Cartoon Movies on Children 's Gender Development).
It is important to first understand how gender identities are formed. Since behaviors
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In the beginning of The Little Mermaid, Ariel is adventurous and curious. She explores the sea and collects every object she comes across. When she sees Prince Eric she says “Prince Eric’s so handsome. I can hardly wait until the day I see him again (Walt Disney 's Story Land: 55 Favorite Stories).” Ariel then starts spending her time obsessing over him and only him. She even gave Ursula her voice to get legs so that she can live a human life with Eric. At the end of the story she got the prince to fall in love with her, but she in turn lost her personality and left her friends, family and everything she loved behind. When Ariel sacrificed her voice for legs, she could not satisfy her want to stay human without the help of Eric (Damsels in Distress: A Textual Analysis of Gender Roles in Disney Princess Films). The lesson that is taught in this story is that young girls should sacrifice their thoughts and opinions to attain bodily perfection, which is a vital trait for girls according to society (Damsels in Distress: A Textual Analysis of Gender Roles in Disney Princess Films). Young children can also infer that you shouldn’t be yourself if you want someone to fall in love with you. TALK ABOUT

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