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An Institutional analysis from the perspective
Funtionalist and Conflict Theorist

Jennifer Shintaku
April 2, 2017
History of Disney
Disney started in 1943 with $40 and a handful of
sharpened pencils (In the Maw 1).

Disneys first animation was Alices Wonderland

which was half animation, half real life.

Disney then decided to go full animation, and that is

when Snow White was born.
History of Princess Brand
The princess brand started with
just one princess: Snow White from
the movie Snow White and the
Seven Dwarves which was made in
1937 (Mollet 109) and now has
evolved into 11 princesses.

Andy Mooney, marketing officer,

decided to lump them all together
in 2000 (Higgs 1)
Positive Vs. Negative
Perceptions from the society
Positive: Negative:

Princesses are good-hearted, happy, Emphasizes traditional gender roles

positive characters (Healy 1). (Johnson 36).

Teach good traits: bravery, curiosity, Sets up false perceptions of what life is
adventurous and hard work. like (Olfman 36).

No violence and blood for the most part Sets up false images of what a good or
perfect body is supposed to look like.
How does the members of
within this institution wouldView Itself?
enjoy what they are doing.

Most of the members are participating in what they love and are able
to artistically express themselves through these stories.

Many of these members also grew up with these type of fairy tales so
these stories are probably reminiscent of their childhoods.
Rebranding the Princess

Original princesses included Snow White, Cinderella,


They symbolize the ideal of the wedded and

domesticated Western Woman that was
prevalent during the time that these three movies
came out (1937, 1950, and 1959) (Higgs 2).

These princesses are kept,... content to be so and

comfortable in their domesticity (Higgs 2)

Functionalist Analysis: Within these three princesses,

gender roles are upheld through the actions of the
Rebranding the Princess

These include Ariel, Mulan, and Belle

These princesses fight against [their] patriarchal system (Higgs 3).

As independent as she initially appears, will always end up in her

proper place: by her man (Higgs 3).

Even though these princesses seem to have take a step forward

toward a more feministic view, they still end up needing a man to
make everything in their life all better
Rebranding the Princess

Tiana, Rapunzel, and Merida all fall under this


Although these princesses are known for their hard

work, independence, and butts against the
system (Higgs 4), she still is not praised for her

The revival princess is looked down upon for her

actions which is just as bad as not having these
qualities at all (Higgs 4).
Rebranding the Princess
And finally, there are even newer princesses
that would totally rebrand this princess

Even though in Frozen there is a love interest,

ultimately it is the love between the sisters
that saves the day.

And even in Moana, it is Moanas courage and

believing in herself that helps her save the

In these stories, the princesses are the heroes

of their own stories.
Why is there rebranding?
As the modern woman progresses, and as the image of gender roles
progress, more and more people are backlashing against the
princess image.

Looking at Cinderella, Snow White, and Aurora alone, there are many
things about them that the modern woman would not agree with.

This analysis of the older more classic princess, has caused our
modern society to call for a new brand of princess that more
accurately embodies the todays modern woman
Stable Features:
This line is a $4 billion business thats on its way to becoming the
most successful marketing venture ever (Seetodeh 2).
Their products range from dresses of all sizes to tiaras to lunch boxes
to plush toys.
No matter what the princess movie is, there will always be
merchandise to accompany it.
Conflict Theory Analysis: Merchandising is another way of promoting
ideologies that are shown within these movies.
How would I improve this
I would improve this institution by continuing the idea of molding the
princess image to the modern woman.

I would make it such that maybe the princess is trans or lesbian, to

better include other underrepresented minorities.

I would also try to include more positive attitudes and views when it
comes to independence and strength of the princesses.

Finally, I would also try to encourage breaking down the stigma of

unconventional gender roles.
Major Participants in this
Controls artistic and dramatic aspects of a movie

Find literary property, shape an idea into a film, raise money, hire directors, choose
cast, and oversee production and postproduction

Write screenplays for the movies

Create the animations, multiple images that give illusions of movement when in a
rapid sequence
Does the Institution work
better for Some as
This institution to
works very well for Others?
younger children because they are
the consumers that the institution is advertising to.

The Princess Brand does not advertise itself to adults because adults
do not believe in fairytales because they have lived life and are
aware of reality.
Works Cited
1. Healy, Christopher. "Once upon a Time...:" Edmonton Journal, Jan 09, 2005, pp. D3, ProQuest Central,

Screen Education, no. 83, 2016, pp. 62-69, ProQuest Central,

3. "In the Maw of the Mouse: Disney's Pervasive Empire is Corrupting our Cultural Heritage." Western
Report, vol. 11, no. 27, Jul 22, 1996, pp. 26-30, ProQuest Central,

4. Johnson, Matthew. "The Little Princess Syndrome." Natural Life 136 (2010): 34-36. Consumer Health
Complete - EBSCOhost. Web. 28 April 2017.

5. Olfman, Sharna. The Sexualization of Childhood. Westport, CT: Praeger, 2009. Print.
6. Setoodeh, Ramin, and Jennie Yabroff. "Princess Power." Newsweek 150.22 (2007): 66-67. Academic
Search Premier. Web. 28 Oct. 2014.
7. Tracey Mollet. With a Smile and a Song : Walt Disney and the Birth of the American Fairy Tale.