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2. The "Overbearing" Father


This type of father is one many are familiar with in their own lives; they want the best for their children but as a result can come off controlling. These fathers’ overbearing attitude offers a plot device for the movie. In Pocahontas, her father urges her to marry Kocoum even though she is reluctant to do so. In Aladdin, Jasmine’s dad is also obsessed with her getting married (seriously though, these girls are still teenagers). Mulan’s father too wishes her to become a respectful lady and make a good match, however he seems to accept her for who she is a bit more than the other fathers in this category. Regardless of the extent, each of these fathers present a reason for these characters to work harder for what they want, despite the consequences.


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This was initially where my last post about Disney, Sexism and Racism was going until I realized that Disney’s racism really does deserve it’s own topic. If not a series of them. The problematic issues brought up in that post are still true in this one. I also suggest everyone read ColorQ’s review which goes down how incredibly inaccurate Mulan is to the source material as well as Chinese culture at the time and a few other points as well, and this post in no way refutes them- they’re all true.

Aside from the numerous problems (which are inevitable, this being Disney and Hollywood in general), I do like Mulan, I like the way it approaches sexism because it isn’t in an over-the-top approach of smashing anyone over the head with an aesop or trying to invalidate feminists, it wouldn’t be an awful way of showing it in our culture. Unfortunately, Mulan would probably be completely unacceptable if she were white and in white culture.


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