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The Changing Appearance of the Disney Princess

Look at the changes in the Disney princesses throughout the decades. The princesses went from being all white, to finally adding in some other "races." However, most of the princesses even today are of white European appearance. There is a shift happening within the world of the Disney "princess" to where princesses of other persuasions are slowly joining the beloved originals like Cinderella and Snow White. With Tiana, there is finally an African American princess. There are other heroines such as Ariel, Megara, Esmerelda, Pocahontas, and Mulan. However most of these characters could be classified as ethnic whites. This group is a minority in the group of Disney heroines and princesses. Disney is coming out with new movies that are introducing characters from other places in the world besides the European region. Show the changes in the princesses’ culture and ethnicities and explain any patterns that have developed. By this I mean to look at the additions to the Disney princess grouping since the 1980s.

  • The "shift" happened in the mid-90's and it seems like another is happening "now." Is your topic asking to explore the different patterns that have occurred with ethnic princesses since Snow White or just recently? I think this needs clarification. Also does "appearance" also include animation style? Because that too has changed with technological advances. – Cmandra 6 years ago
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  • I'm not sure what you mean by "ethnic whites". It's an interesting term, but Mulan is Chinese (Asia) and Pocahontas is Native American (North America). Esmeralda is Romanian, Megana is Greek, Ariel is a fish. Do you mean how light-skinned they are in the films? – Katheryn 6 years ago
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  • Ethnic whites are those that look white but are not European. Merida would be an ethnic white. So would Rapunzel. – amandajarrell 6 years ago
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