Hi! My name is Andrea Wright -Macedo and welcome to my blog on Decoding Disney! I will use this space to post personal responses to various Disney films in addition to reflections on scholarly articles regarding the essence of Disney, the company, as well as the significance of Walt Disney, the man.
As a first-year student at Duke University, leading up to my spring semester I was required to enroll in a Writing 101 class. With subjects ranging from the science of food choice to the uprising of social change, I had the opportunity to explore one of various topics in great detail. As my eyes scanned through each course description, one in particular sparked my interest from the very start. Decoding Disney seemed like the ideal class to learn about an entity — more like a childhood experience, itself — in a way I might perhaps never consider thinking about. While I could pick up a science journal and read about food choice or skim a newspaper for the latest in social movements across our modern world, I felt like Disney was not as prevalent a discussion topic in our society.
As a child, I grew up watching classic Disney movies like Cinderella, Alice in Wonderland, and even some of the more eccentric films such as Atlantis: The Lost Empire.
Happy endings were abound; thrilling adventures and consistently predictable romances permeated millions of television screens across the world.
As I look back on my most cherished Disney tales, I can’t help but find the simplicity of “love at first sight” and the use of a magical kiss as a common cure-all a bit amusing. Life is certainly not a Disney movie. However, there are several positive morals to take away from my favorite animated movies, as well as many negative stereotypes and hidden messages to discover. While my aim in taking this class is not to permanently “ruin my childhood memories,” I do hope to undergo a more realistic and mature exploration of the Disney industry as well as its individual themes, story lines and characters.
So here’s to a rare opportunity and an exciting class! I can’t wait to see what I’ll unearth.