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Transcendentalism in Disney

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Anna Hughes

on 17 November 2015

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Transcript of Transcendentalism in Disney

Natalie Brekken, Rachel Constant, Anna Hughes
in Disney Movies

Common themes in Transcendentalism literature are non-conformity, nature, and self-reliance. These themes still exist today in our modern world. For example, Disney uses transdentalism idelogoy in many of their moives.
Thinking for oneself without the rules set by society.

By contemplating nature, one can transcend the world and find unity among all.
Reliance on one's own powers and resources rather than those of others.
"Colors of the Wind"
Vanessa Williams
"You think you own whatever land you land on
The Earth is just a dead thing you can claim
But I know every rock and tree and creature
Has a life, has a spirit, has a name"
This represents the Transcendentalist idea that the beauty of nature and the land cannot be 'owned' and also the idea that there is a spirit in every living thing that makes it alive.
"For whether we are white or copper skinned
We need to sing with all the voices of the mountains
We need to paint with all the colors of the wind"
These lines show how nature unites everyone and everything in the universe and how we all should appreciate the beauty of nature.
"Come roll in all the riches all around you
And for once, never wonder what they're worth"
This goes along with the ideas of the beauty of nature and the simplicity of life. The lyrics encourage us to enjoy the beauty of nature and not to worry about materialistic values.
"The rainstorm and the river are my brothers
The heron and the otter are my friends
And we are all connected to each other
In a circle, in a hoop that never ends"
These lyrics shows how there is a direct connection or between nature and the Pocahontas' soul and how she feels harmonious and equal with nature. They also explain how everything in the world is connected to one and other through an endless "loop."
Snow White
Mulan saw her opportunity to break free from the pressures of society when one man from each family had to serve in the war against the Huns. She took it upon herself to disguise as a man in order to break free of the societal norms of women.
“Never part of any crowd, Cause her head’s up on some cloud, No denying she’s a funny girl, that Belle!”
“She’s nothing like the rest of us, Yes different from the rest of us is Belle!”
Soundtrack Artists
Another reason Belle is different from society is because doesn’t care about appearances and looks at who people are inside, which is why she falls in love with the Beast.
When all the girls in town are fawning over Gaston and singing, “Look there he goes, isn’t he dreamy? Monsieur Gaston, oh he’s so cute, Be still my heart, I’m hardly breathing, He’s such a tall dark, strong, and handsome brute," Belle is not interested because she looks past Gaston's big muscles and dreamy eyes and sees him for he really is: a materialistic, greedy, and rude man.
"With a Smile and a Song"
Soundtrack Artists

"When you smile and you sing
Everything is in tune and it's spring
And life flows along
With a smile and a song"
"When the raindrops come tumbling
Remember, you're the one
Who can fill the world with sunshine"
"One Jump Ahead"
Menken Alan
Belle is different from society because she does not follow the same lifestyle as the other villagers and always has her nose in a book, something they do not understand.
Mulan didn't succeed in what society defined as the test of what it took to be a woman- the matchmaker test. Her purpose in life wasn't to be just a simple house wife and she knew that.
Mulan knew the role she had been told to follow in society wasn't what she was meant to be. She wanted to break free and find out who she truly was
Christina Aguilera
She does not want the same, old ordinary life as the other townspeople and longs for something more...
"Little town It's a quiet village
Ev'ry day
Like the one before
Little town
Full of little people
Waking up to say..”
"There must be more than this provincial life!"

Belle reflects transdentalism qualities because she follows her own beliefs and does not let herself confrom to society's "normal" standards.
Transcendentalists believe that one's mood is directly affected by nature, and Snow White sings about how nature affects her mood and also how her mood can affect nature. She also is very connected to nature as are transcendentalists.
Nature is something that makes Snow White happy and that she has a real connection with. She appreciates nature's beauty and gets a lot out of nature representing the nature theme of transcendentalism.
"Oh, It's sad Aladdin hit the bottom
He's become a one-man rise in crime
I'd blame parents except he hasn't got 'em"
Aladdin had to fend for himself when he was on the streets because he grew up without any parents. This clearly represents the transcendental theme of self-reliance.
"Gotta eat to live,
gotta steal to eat"
Aladdin didn't have a choice to steal or not, he relied on his own tricks and thievery to live. Transcendentalists also believed that one should not rely on the help of others.
Because Aladdin did not rely on help or advice from anyone, he could go after the love of his life despite social norms. He displayed transcendentalism because he achieved success all by himself and followed his own beliefs.
Mulan represents the Transdentalism qualitiy of nonconformity because she goes against what is "normal" for women and does not let society's expectations hold her back.
Works Cited

Picture of Pochonhatus
''Colors of the Wind'' Vanessa
Circle of Life Picture
Nature Picture

Snow White
Picture of Snow White
"'With a Smile and a Song"' Various Artists
Picture 1
Picture 2

From the beginning of the movie Tiana is easily characterized as self-reliant ambitious by working two jobs and hoping to achieve her dreams through hard work.
Mickey Mouse Picture
Princesses Picture

Tiana's main dream was to own a successful restaurant that she would call Tiana's Place. in the song, "Almost There"she expressed how her hard work and earned achievements had led her to her accomplishments.
"I work real hard each and everyday
and I'm almost there."
"Fairlytales can come true, You gotta make 'em happen, it all depends on you"
Tiana was entirely self made, everything she had accomplished was earned through hard work and persistence. She continually proves this throughout the movie.

"You can't get what you want just by wishing for it."
"The ONLY way to get what you want in this world is through hard work."
"I gotta dig a little deeper, and work even harder to get my restaurant."
"I am now
In a world where I
Have to hide my heart
And what I believe in
But somehow
I will show the world
What's inside my heart
And be loved for who I am"
"I won't pretend that I'm
Someone else for all time
When will my reflection show
Who I am inside?"
Full transcript