Change search
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Lyckliga i alla sina dagar?: Makt, kön och heterosexualitet i tre Disneyfilmer
Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of culture and media studies.
2015 (Swedish)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesisAlternative title
Happily ever after? : Power, gender and heterosexuality in three Disney movies (English)
Abstract [en]

The purpose of this thesis was to examine the ways in which the constructions of heterosexuality and gender in three Disney movies about princesses affect the power relations between men and women in the movies, and how discourses on gender and heterosexuality have changed over time. Research questions were:

  • How do characters in the movies talk about gender and heterosexuality?
  • How does the interplay between gender and heterosexuality affect the power relations between men and women in the movies?
  • What are the likenesses and differences between movies from different time periods?

Discourses were mapped out using a model based on Ernesto Laclau and Chantal Mouffe’s political theories. These discourses were then analyzed with a theoretical framework consisting of Yvonne Hirdman’s concept of gender system and gender contracts, Judith Butler’s view on the heterosexual matrix and an understanding of power relations based on Michel Foucault. Results showed that the construction of gender and heterosexuality are intimately connected, as the main character’s desire or lack of desire for the prince was central to the plot in all three movies. Results also indicate that the most recent film was the most subversive in terms of constructions of gender and heterosexuality. Power relations between men and women remained relatively stable through all three movies, since most expressions of opposition did not really challenge patriarchal norms. 

My conclusion is that the development of gender portrayal in popular culture is going in the right direction, since women and girls now have access to a wider spectrum of gender expressions as exemplified in this study. But the lack of men venturing into areas and displaying behaviour traditionally associated with women suggests a reinforcement of a patriarchal structure where masculinity is viewed as preferable to femininity. This view is limiting men’s possibilities of expressing themselves, as well as downgrading women who express femininity.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. , 35 p.
Keyword [en]
Power, Gender, Heterosexuality, Discourse, Disney, Popular culture, Cartoons
Keyword [sv]
Kön, Makt, Heterosexualitet, Diskursanalys, Disney, Populärkultur, Tecknad film
National Category
Media and Communications
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-101727OAI: diva2:801641
Educational program
Programme in Media and Communication Studies: Strategic Communication
Available from: 2015-04-10 Created: 2015-04-09 Last updated: 2015-04-10Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

Lyckliga i alla sina dagar? Makt, kön och heterosexualitet i tre Disneyfilmer(469 kB)314 downloads
File information
File name FULLTEXT01.pdfFile size 469 kBChecksum SHA-512
Type fulltextMimetype application/pdf

By organisation
Department of culture and media studies
Media and Communications

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
Total: 314 downloads
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

Total: 876 hits
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link