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Disney Puts New Racism Warning On Peter Pan, Dumbo And The Jungle Book

by : Emily Brown on : 16 Oct 2020 08:46
Disney Puts New Racism Warning On Peter Pan, Dumbo And The Jungle BookDisney Puts New Racism Warning On Peter Pan, Dumbo And The Jungle BookDisney

Disney has updated the racism warning on some of its older content to express hopes that viewers will be able to learn from its ‘harmful impact’. 

The company’s back catalogue of films is available to stream on Disney+, with films such as Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and Bambi dating back decades.

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While many people may still enjoy watching the old classics, a number of films include racist content, such as offensive parodies.

DumboDumboDisney

Disney first acknowledged this last year by including a disclaimer on titles such as The Aristocats, Fantasia and Lady and the Tramp, to say that the films were ‘presented as originally created’ and ‘may contain outdated cultural depictions.’

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At the time, members of the public accused Disney of trying to ‘gloss over’ the racism by referring to it as ‘outdated’. The company has since changed its warning on films including Peter Pan, The Jungle Book and Dumbo to acknowledge the content is wrong.

The new warning reads:

This program includes negative depictions and/or mistreatment of people or cultures.

These stereotypes were wrong then and are wrong now. Rather than remove this content, we want to acknowledge its harmful impact, learn from it and spark conversation to create a more inclusive future together.

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Disney explains some of the controversial content, noting that the 1953 film Peter Pan refers to Native Americans as ‘redskins’, and that Peter and the Lost Boys dance in headdresses in a ‘form of mockery and appropriation of Native peoples’ culture and imagery.’

In the 1970s film The Aristocats, Disney acknowledges that one of the characters ‘sings in poorly accented English voiced by a white actor and plays the piano with chopsticks.’

The advisories come as part of Disney’s review of its library content.

If you have been affected by any of the issues in this article and wish to speak to someone in confidence, contact Stop Hate UK by visiting their website www.stophateuk.org/talk

Emily Brown

Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.

Topics: Film and TV, Black Lives Matter, Disney, Racism, streaming, warning