Thursday, March 4, 2010

"Unlearning the Myths that Bind Us" - Christensen

I thought that this was an interesting article and after reading this I would like to see some Disney movies and analyze them. However, I thought that Christensen's emphasis on the idea that children's stories and cartoons are damaging isa bit exaggerated. Again, I can’t say for sure since I did not yet see and discuss the specific films myself, but I definitely thought that he made it sound much worse than it is in reality.
Here are some quotes that I disagreed with:

"Many students don't want to believe that they have been manipulated
by children's media or advertising. No one wants to admit that they've been "handled" by the media. They assure me that they make their own choices and the media has no power over them -as they sit with Fubu, Nike, Tim berlands or whatever the latest fashion rage might be".
This is one instance where I think he is really exaggerating. Every culture has things that are considered "popular". Every culture has its own ideas of beauty and style. I agree that American culture is much more based on consumerism than any other culture, but I am not about to stop buying things I like just to prove some point, or to prove that I am an "independent thinker" or that I "have not been handled by the media". What other option is there? Am I going to sew my own clothes? Everybody follows trends to some extent, and I think its totally OK. I think I would be one of those students so judged by Christensen.

“For some students the cartoon unit exposes the wizardry that enters our dreams and desires, but others shrug their shoulders at this. It's okay for some people to be rich and others poor; they just want to see more rich people of color or more rich women, Or better yet, be rich themselves, they accept the inequalities in power and exploitative economic relationships”.
Again, I think I am one of those students he is talking about. I accept it as well. Its has been so all throughout history. I accept the fact that I am always going to be poorer than someone else. And its normal. Its not perfect -but its normal. If power and wealth were measured in gold thousands of years ago, and now they are measured in designer clothes than so be it. Its all the same and I see nothing discriminatory about that. Its no reason to start a movement against cartoons.

“The messages, or "secret education," linked with the security of their homes, underscore the power these texts deliver. As Tatum's research suggests, the stereotypes and world view embedded in the stories become accepted knowledge”.
This quote is the basis of everything Christensen talks about in the article. I do agree that her argument is primarily true. But I think its like that everywhere. Every culture has its own stories, its own stereotypes, and its own values. Values have often been based on stories. Again, I really do not think there is something inherently evil about that. Certain specific stereotypes can be evil or discriminatory, but I think there is nothing wrong in the big picture.


  1. some stereotypes are ok because some are true, i think we just need to watch for the ones that are hateful

  2. Yana,
    I agree that this article seemed really exaggerated and at times while reading it I was scoffing because it seemed really outrageous. Like you I feel like children's movies help them to get some idea's about society but I don't think they are as damaging as Christensen portrays in this article.

  3. Yana, I feel the same way as you. I felt that the article was a little over exaggerated during some points. I would also like to view these movies to see where the problems are.

  4. While making solid points, I agree Christensen definetly overexaggerated in the article.

  5. Wow! You brought up a lot of very good points! The first quote you commented on, was also a quote that I had chosen for my blog entry. At first I thought Linda was not exaggerating at all, that she just had caught the topic head on, but you gave me a new perspective/train of thought... I feel that the media has affected everyone in many different ways, but yet I also feel like we cannot do much about it.

  6. I agree with you and all your points. I liked all your quotes I thought you explained them well.