Topic Proposal for Individual Project--Emily

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I began exploring today the idea of making an e-book that analyzes film, simply because I know in the past I've written papers on films that have been successful all but for the fact that I couldn't easily show the reader examples of what I was trying to prove. Writing a thesis about film in e-book form sounds like an excellent way to get around that problem. I believe being able to show clips from film throughout the text would be an interesting and fun way to incorporate such media into a nonfiction e-book.

That said, I want to create an e-book that analyzes the themes and ideas within Disney animated classics and do a kind of longitudinal study examining how frequent exposure to those themes has affected the ideologies of people of our generation. As someone who grew up in the nineties, I know I watched animated Disney movies on at least a weekly basis and that others my age watched them just as frequently if not more. Disney movies are still a topic of discussion within college lunchrooms today as a result of the monopoly that Disney had on family videos in the second half of the 20th century, especially in the 1980's and 1990's when the company launched so many of its animated classics such as Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid, and the ever-popular The Lion King.

For a lot of young Americans, the ideas of morality put out by Disney classics were the only moral teachings they received on a regular basis. I intend to research what kinds of ideas and behavior define my generation today and how often people of my generation watched Disney movies while they were children (quite a lot, I believe) so that I can maybe find correlations between the two to try and determine whether or not frequent exposure to Disney ideals has affected what people my age do and think today. It's a study of moral development, an analysis of film, and potentially one of brainwashing.

I'm envisioning an e-book that delves into a possible phenomenon and presents the findings in the form of text, film, charts, graphs and any other kind of media I'll need to report the results of my study.


Meagan757's picture


To start, this sounds awesome. Our generation LOVES disney & we grew up with all the princess classics. I think this takes an interesting approach to marry the video clips from the movies into the text you plan on writing. It would also be cool if you could incorporate the sound tracks that we know (and love).

Would you be sectioning your ebook off by movies or organizing the content by themes seen in the movies? Maybe some have similar themes that you're trying to explain? Also, will copyright be an issue? Are you allowed to use it if it's not for profit? Sounds awesome though, good luck!

Abby's picture

Consider copyright. Were you

Consider copyright. Were you hoping to include excerpts from the Disney movies that you mentioned? I love the idea, but due to the size of Disney, be aware of what you can and cannot include when gathering pieces for your ebook.

That said, I love the idea of brainwashing and the possible meanings put behind fairy tales--Disney movies especially. Right now it sounds like a very big topic. Ask yourself questions about how you can focus on specific elements of the movies. Are you looking for patterns and issues based on a certain topic? (that most Disney princesses don't have mothers, body image, etc). Are you only planning to focus on Disney? Or do you plan to look at the way that fairy tales have been used to brainwash as well?

I love your idea. It really

I love your idea. It really is a very interesting topic that could be made very dull by just straight forward research paper. I think putting it into e-book format and adding clips from the videos to prove your point will bring the topic to life. This topic will be very interesting to us 80's and 90's kids. I know that the research will take a lot of work, but it will be worth it to see the end result. I would just be careful to make sure you include different e-book elements to your project. Since we haven't covered too much about things that we can do with e-books at this point I don't know exactly what I would suggest, but the movie clips are a great start!! You have a great idea, and I look forward to seeing the end result!


sounds like very interesting research. i agree with you that our generation of kids got hit hardest in the 90's when disney movies seemed to dominate family living rooms. i believe a movie that twisted tons of kids visions about history would be Pocahontas. this particular disney story is so far from what actually happened, but people to this day seem to still believe it as the real account

carsonk's picture

You could do something

You could do something similar to the article in Wired we looked at in class the other day! You can incorporate YouTube clips of the movies and won't have to worry about the copyright issues (I think?). You could use fun images and audio clips. I think this can be a really fun project. I can't wait to see what happens with it!