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The History and Impact of Modern Cartoons

Analyse the development of modern cartoons and animations. What impact might they have on young children’s perception of the world – whether that is related to how a certain animal/person/character looks like (their visual representation), or whether it impacts behaviours in a certain way. How might kids react to certain characters and relationships portrayed on the screen? Can some of these have a perceptible negative impact on their lives?

As a starting point, trace the development of cartoons (from Disney, to Cartoon Network, etc) and some iconic shows.

  • I like this idea, but I definitely agree that it'd probably be best to pick some (or even one) specific show/s. Or maybe the way that modern cartoons have impacted one specific part of life/culture? There are so many different impacts you could argue modern cartoons have had, after all. – AnnieEM 1 year ago
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  • This might be a cliche suggestion, but an interesting route along these lines would be to analyze a cartoon that is bursting with political and social commentary (Like the new She-ra and The Princesses of Power"), to see if any of the major themes are actually absorbed by kids, or if they are more like fan service (harsh term but lacking a better one) for the many LGBTQIA adult viewers the cartoon's producers knew would be watching. You may be looking for more of a meta-analysis, but a lot of interesting things could be gleaned from examining She-Ra and it's viewership. – adhyuki 1 year ago
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  • I like this topic - perhaps you could detail the change of modern cartoons from purely for children (but with bits and gags meant to help their parents be entertained as well, I'm thinking Rugrats), to what Modern Cartoons look like now. For example, Adventure Time and Stephen Universe, which obviously are enjoyed by all ages due to its creators using a mixture of techniques (both visual and writing) to entertain a wider audience. Perhaps then you could delve into how this change then affects children today - for example, how much are the picking up on themes/ideas that are not meant for them? Or how is the overall tone, perhaps from purely chaotic comedy (Fairly Odd Parents) to a mixture of serious and comedy (Avatar the last airbender/Adventure Time) to purely adult animation that we all know many children are watching (Invincible/Rick and Morty etc). – Harry P 12 months ago
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  • There's definitely a lot of interesting directions you could go with this topic. Like how the decline of linear television and concurrent rise of streaming has broken down demographic barriers. Or how social media has transformed the ways fans interact with creators and the works they produce. – AddThreeAndFive 2 months ago
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Animal studies and cartoons?

I am interested in this topic. Maybe here there are already many articles and people focusing on that? Maybe several people that know good books, articles related to anthropomorphization?

  • Do you have a specific idea or question about animal studies and cartoons? Maybe, why cartoons tend to anthropomorphize animals, or what the history of cartoons with animal characters is like? These are just examples. Once you have a specific idea or question in mind, try searching this site using the magnifying glass icon at the top of the page to see if other articles or topics have been written about this idea. Good luck! – Eden 5 years ago
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  • Thanks for the hint. I am interested in all kinds of questions related to this topic but specifically, I have an interest in how anthropomorphization affects the perception of animals and how animal stereotypes are showed and created in cartoons. I am pretty sure I will find some information for those questions, here. – JustinaVonDanzig 5 years ago
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  • I would be more specific with your topic. Because right now I feel it's a little too broad. – BMartin43 5 years ago
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  • I'm not sure I see the issue: animals and cartoons. Is this about Bugs Bunny or the Lion King? This needs a major rewriting. – Joseph Cernik 5 years ago
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  • As other people have mentioned, I would make this question more specific to one or two cartoons or works, like ThunderCats, the Animorphs book series, etc., and discuss one main issue with anthromorphization. For example, "Manimals: The History of Anthropomorphization" or "Bunnies and Cats and Dogs, Oh My! The History of Talking Animals in Saturday Morning TV." – Devon 5 years ago
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Living Vicariously Through Cartman: Cartoons, Free Speech and Taboo

Cartoons like South Park and The Boondocks are known for their provocative humour. However, its hard to imagine the same jokes and subject matter in a live-action format being tolerated in mainstream culture. Consider whether the worlds of cartoons, due to their overt incongruence with real life on the superficial level, make this kind of humour more palatable. Also, discuss the significance of cartoons for public conversation and free speech. Do cartoons and the universes they create allow us to indulge in taboo conversations in a way that is more difficult with more realistic material?

  • Definitely. I mean having these topics brought up in an 'unreal' world surely makes these things easier to say, and therefore, easier for viewers to stomach? Same kind of logic that applies to depersonalisation through online communication I suppose. – TomWadsworth 7 years ago
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