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"What made the red man red?"

In her comment on my previous entry, katranna notes that Disney actively avoids black characters. This is true, but they used to be a little less avoidant. For example, the original version of the animated Fantasia had a little black centaur girl in the Beethoven's Pastoral section. The little black centaur girl, Sunflower, was being a sycophantic slave to the white centaur girls. Sunflower has since been cropped out, denied and otherwise suppressed during Fantasia theatrical and DVD re-releases. See here for a still of Sunflower and even a clip! The rest of the article [about Disney's most racist characters] is worth reading as well. 

The subject line comes from the #3 most racist characters, the Indians in Disney's Peter Pan [admittedly based on J.M. Barrie's stereotyped Pickanninny tribe, which, in a confusing stew of racism, are named after a derogatory term for African-Americans]. They sing a song with that title.

P.S . The list at Cracked.com forgot Stromboli, the fat yelling Italian stereotype in Pinnochio, as well as the eeeeevil slanty-eyed suck-uppy Siamese cats in The Lady and the Tramp who don't speak grammatically ["Now we looking over our new domicile / If we like, we stay for maybe quite a while"].

Comments

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
melopoeia
Dec. 5th, 2007 11:10 pm (UTC)
They also left out the jackals in The Lion King. I think it was jackals. It was so long ago that all I can remember is that I found The Lion King offensive.

bozobrain
Dec. 5th, 2007 11:12 pm (UTC)
Racist Disney
Ya know, I never really did ever like Disney. The characters always seemed to cloyingly cute. But isn't it sick how everyone else apparently LOVES Disney?
I had the chance to go to Disneyland with my family (a case of temporary insanity), and the whole place is a giant souvenir store. I never been to such a crassly money-grubbing place in all my life. But the little kids don't know any better. If you never been to Disneyland before, people look at you as if you're from Mars. Well, me and David Bowie like it there just fine!
I've ranted long enough. Great post, by the way!
blogofstench
Dec. 6th, 2007 03:21 am (UTC)
Re: Racist Disney
Hey, I've never been to a Disney anything either, unless you count Disney on Ice once last year. Some people seem to think that I've missed a major milestone of my childhood, however.

Re Mars -- did I mention that was a beautiful video? Oh the eyeshadow...
melopoeia
Dec. 5th, 2007 11:12 pm (UTC)
funny thing was, as a little kid, I loved those cats and their song and never really got at first that they were supposed to be bad. I even thought that domrystyle was a word (that was how they pronounced it). I mean, lady was ok, but they got the good music. AND MY SUPPOSEDLY ENLIGHTENED PARENTS LET ME WATCH IT!

When I got a little older, someone told me that their role in the movie was associated with the Korean war and they were supposed to symbolize North Korea or something.

Jesus.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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