The Media's Unnecessary Impact on Western Views of Islamic People (Focusing on the Disney Movie Aladdin)

Essay by adrienne5583High School, 12th grade April 2007

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The way the media portrays a character impacts how that kind of person is seen in the eyes of others who are not in common contact with them. This includes, but is most definitely not limited to women, especially those of the Islamic religion. Islamic women are portrayed in western media many times, as scantily clad belly dancers, or women who remain silent, seemingly succumbing to the whims of their male counterparts. Islamic men are also almost always either villains or evil. A deeper look into the Islamic culture of women and men shows that this is a very false representation of Islamic population. The question is then raised; 'to what extent should the media form our perceptions of Islam and it's people'?One of the most well known movies that has to do with Islamic people to kids and adults alike who have grown up in the West is Aladdin. Many people in the West, both young and old, have viewed this classic Disney movie. In this movie, there was a revision done to the second sentence in the movie. The original lyric to the opening song was, "Oh, I come from a land, from a faraway place, where the caravan camels roam. Where they cut off your ear if they don't like your face. It's barbaric, but, hey, its home" (Aladdin, Aladdin Central). The second part of the lyric was removed due to complaints to Disney. Also, in reference to the movie Aladdin, the main character, Aladdin, was a perfect representation of an American person. Aladdin had no accent, and at one point, even asked to be called "Al" (Aladdin). This is while the villain, Jafar, looks very distinguished, and has a Middle Eastern accent.

In the West, little kids and adults alike grow up watching the...