B&tB general concerns(5 Posts)
This is not about the new film particularly. I've not seen it and I'm not going to, mainly because if I can't take the baby I'm not going anywhere. But, am I wrong to find beauty and the beast troubling?
I mean he traps her in his house, forces her to cook and clean for him and then she falls in love with him and he magically becomes a better person.
There are hundreds and thousands of women around the world who die while they are waiting for that same magical transformation. That's the real tale as old as time (sorry).
Not a huge fan of Emma Watson's acting, but I loved the way she handled boobgate. At one level I thought great standing up for yourself, but on the other hand I thought aren't we all missing the point? This is a kids film condoning domestic violence (in 2017!)
Also, this kind of ties in with other threads about the Mustafa Bashir case and the idea that an intelligent woman can't be vulnerable to DV. Belle is still a very subservient character, but because she reads some books she's somehow a feminist icon?
I know it's just a film, but these things matter don't they? Feel free to educate me as to how the new film makes all the Stockholm syndrome stuff ok. Also I am only going on the Disney/ bumper book of fairytales version, so if they're is a saving grace in the old folk lore I'd like to hear it.
It just makes me sad because I'm sure there are women out there thinking if I'm just a bit smarter/prettier/better at house work/love him more he will change, he won't it's a fairytale.
I don't think you ABU to be concerned about this because stories are the main way we make sense of the world and this is as you say a story that IRL would be a lot less romantic. I do think ancient tales like this can be disrupted and adapted to allow a more nuanced story that accounts for problematic historic concepts but as I haven't seen the new film either I don't know if it manages that. It's Disney so I have some doubts.
If we look at what might be the archetypal B&tB story, the framework is that Beauty cures The Beast with her general loveliness and I find this a worrying concept to present to young people, girls and boys, given that so many relationships consist of a woman or girl trying to save a beastly man. I have been in one of these relationships myself and i cant recommend it.
There was a thread somewhere in chat about B&tB (can't find it now, sadly) where I think a lot of us said we disliked it. And someone posted this great article by Glosswitch. (I brought the tone down as usual by posting a silly video:
Honest Trailer for B&tB "in a tale as old as Stockhom syndrome...).
Basically I've always thought the fairy tale functioned as propaganda to try to persuade women to stay in abusive relationships basesd on the false idea that "if you love him enough, you'll redeem him."
Great article, the clip was funny too.
I think when they brought out the new Cinderella there was a lot of talk about evil stepmothers being really regressive, and yet B&tB goes by unchecked?
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