20111230

I Thought I Loved "Fantasia"

"The worst experience I had during my stay in the United States was a film I saw called Fantasia, by Disney. I had never heard of it and actually ended up watching it by mistake. There were three films playing in the same movie house and I went into the wrong one. The most barbaric thing about this film, something I learned later, was that almost every American child between the ages of six and eight gets to view it. Which means that these people will never again be able to hear specific works by Beetoven, Bach, Handel, Tchaikovsky, etc., without seeing the Disney Figures and Images. That horrifying thing for me in this is the occupation of the imagination by clichés and images which will never go away; the use of  images to prevent experiences, to prevent the having of experiences."

Anecdote drawn from: Müller, Heiner. "19 Answers by Heiner Müller." The Twentieth Century Performance Reader. By Michael Huxley and Noel Witts. 2nd ed. London [u.a.] Routledge, 2007. 315. Print.
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Another thing about Disney's Fantasia:
still from original cut of Disney's Fantasia
This is a still from the original release of Disney's Fantasia, featuring (on the left) Sunflower, manicurist to the white centaur. Things like this were mainstream, and white people don't really talk about it. In fact this character has been practically erased from Disney's archives because of its horribly racist overtones.  Thankfully, we as a culture may remember it's existence in our collective history as it remains easily accessible on the internet. [video link

A question I'm left with: If this is something that the media gods at Disney have almost successfully erased for our collective history, what else about our understanding of this world could be lost  if the internet, the new archival source of human existence, were to be censored, mediated by some third party?



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