Little Mothers and Big Mothers: Gender Representations in Animation Films.
Early Disney heroins such as Snow White fit nearly whithin a patiarchal view of society in which women are confined to passive roles centered around the stereotypes of good wife or wise mother whose skills are mailnly centered around housework. these heroins seldom take the initiative to change their fates and instead are often portrayed as beautiful heroins meekly awaiting rescue by princes. Onthe other hand, today's Japanese animated films such as those produced by Studio Ghibli are notable for their active female roles. Yet this does not necessarily imply simply that modern Jaapanese screenwriters are affirming the independenceof woman. Upon closer examination, it is clear that especially in the films directed by Hayao Miyazaki, the female characters fit into one of two types: first, activeyoung girls, and second, earth-goddes like "Big Mother" characters. The Large gap between these two extremes is interesting in the way in which is seems to toexpress the peculiarities of the screenwriter's views on gender roles. Here, I will examine the portrayal of gender roles in Disnet films and compare them primarily with films directed by Hayao miyazaki to arrive at an analysisof the state of gender representation in today's animated films.