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June 1994


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Amy Nelson <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Mon, 20 Jun 1994 22:02:41 EDT
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RIGHT ON, MAN! Your post about Snow White et al and FTBYAM was
exactly the stuff of a novel I've been working on (and my
chromosomes are NOT xx). Marlo's project poisoned (like the
apple in Snow White) my entire childhood with false --
utterly false! and damaging! -- ideas about what the realities
of life as an independent "free" thinking female would be
like in this culture. Atalanta? WRONG! William and his
"doll"? WRONG! The "tender sweet young thing" who gets
eaten by tigers for being a cutie-pie? WRONG SQUARED! It
just doesn't work that way at all, so maybe the feminists
needed a dose of reality with their treacle back in the
seventies, but we certainly shouldn't (as you so aptly
point out) discourage kids from looking coldly and objectively
and if possible intelligently and in a well-informed manner
at what they look at in film and the media today. I would
have to mention Disney's Beauty and the Beast here, because
 I think kids would really benefit from a diverse reading of
the text, including the original fairy tale version and
Jean Cocteau's surrealist version in film. Also, Anne
Sexton's "Transformations" for older girls, and Donald
Barthelme's "Snow White" as soon as vocabularily and
cultural-awareness-wise possible for young boys AND
girls. Satire is the best way to wake people up --
not propaganda from the so-called "other side."
Be a good dad and don't maintain the binary --
gender means a heck of a lot more than male vs.
female! Keep the faith --
Amy Nelson
Amy Nelson
Department of English
Rutgers University
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