Little Disney Feminists

Much to my chagrin, the post on this blog that has received the most hits is the one in which I linked to an article by a feminist on the evils of the Disney Princesses. I barely even commented on the article; I just provided the link. Over the last couple of months the hits have gone out of sight. I have no idea why and would be really interested to know why.

In my search for the reason, I have come across a better known article on the subject that was published in The New York Times in December, 2006 by Peggy Orenstein, entitled “What’s Wrong with Cinderella?” Seems the feminists have a love hate relationship with Cinderella and her cohorts. What would probably be more of concern to the regular readers of Mary Victrix is the way in which young girls are being hyper-sexualized and the way in which the story’s minimize fatherhood; what concerns the feminists, however, is the do-nothing, girlie-girl image of the Princesses (Mulan and Pocahontas, excepted).

In spite of her uneasiness with pink dresses and tiaras for toddlers Orenstein wonders if the current Princess-mania is part of the third wave of feminism. Women are claiming their “right” to have it all: to be one of the boys and a princess at the same time.

The first wave of feminism was the “fight for suffrage.” During the 60s and 70s of the women’s movement saw its second wave, which “fought for reproductive rights and economic, social and legal equality,” and which eschewed gender image altogether, especially that which made women subject to men, either by way of authority or sexuality. The third wave of feminism, according to Orenstein has reclaimed “sexual objectification as a woman’s right.” In other words the new feminists see nothing wrong with being a sex-object as long as it is on their own terms.

Now that “reproductive rights” are fairly secure, men are not entirely to be exiled from the midst of the Amazons. Now the game of exploitation can be engaged in on a much more level playing field. Now feminists are teaching girls to use their sexuality to secure their independence even further and have fun at the same time. They still remain concerned about issues of equality and the culture which puts so much pressure on girls to look like models and Hollywood actresses, but God forbid anyone teach chastity. They are worried about “age-inappropriate” exposure to the culture of lust, but not about the consequences of an unchaste spirit itself.

Without being paranoid, one would think that in this age of pedophilia,  the feminists would be less fearful of chastity and do more to reexamine the dictates of common sense.  One can still hope.

Disney is not the worst of it, for sure, what with Bratz dolls and fashions like Abercrombie & Fitch. Still, what remains particularly distressing about Disney is the target age of little girls and the relative “wholesomeness” of the Disney reputation in main-stream culture.

There seems to be a great deal of latent anger against men who have neglected and abused their wives and abandoned their children. We have much work to do in order to restore respect for the institution of fatherhood. Fathers have a tremendous amount of work to do in order to teach their sons to respect their mothers and sisters and to teach girls that not all male attention is exploitative and selfish.