Having two girls, now 6 and 11, I realized there is a limit to how much Disney princess a human being can embrace. After co-watching these movies for the umpteenth time I constantly try to look for new messages or details in the story but my sad conclusion is that the Disney role modeling is primarily about marrying the right guy and/or be beautiful… save two wonderful exceptions: Tinker Bell and Tiana (from Princess and the Frog).
The majority of the heroines in Disney are victims not in control of their destiny. They all need some other external support – a kiss, a prince or a fairy, or committing their own love – to make it. In a sense, in the real world, it is sad, and it is not the reality I would like our girls to grow up with. Yes, I know I sound boring, but I have seen these movies so many times now, so give me a break …
Our young girls and society need more women like Tiana and Tinker Bell, female entrepreneurs and female engineers, mature women who can prosper in a still very male dominated world where innovation will be key in the future and female lead SME is one of the most exciting categories.
I admire Tiana pursuit of her dream but I love Tinker Bell for accepting her talent and embracing it as a passion. Tinker Bell has quite a temper, is human, she doesn’t take no for an answer, she is focused, innovative etcetera … and off course beautiful. We all know the stats that good looking people do indeed, unfortunately, have an advantage in career making.
In a sense, newcomers on TV, even if it is a blend story, like Winx Club, provide better role modeling for young girls. Being beautiful simply is not enough. You need to have a skill, a passion, and combine those skills in a team (Winx Club) to solve a challenge.
Who would you employ? Cinderella or Tiana?
Who does your daughter imitate? Snow White or Tinker Bell?