The initial review wasn’t even for the tale or the cartoon, but a Disneyland attraction. Excuse me, but I find it hard to think of “censorship” and “merry-go-round” in the same sentence.
When I saw the words “controversy” and “Snow White” appear this week , I was disheartened. I said to myself: ” Here we go, they are going to accuse us of wanting to censor a work when we are simply explaining that it is a stolen kiss.” It never ceases to amaze me to see how, when one is content to have a critical look at a work, it systematically passes for a desire for censorship when the criticisms focus on the relationship between women and men. As if we couldn’t just do feminist criticism.
And then, looking at the “controversy “in more detail, I realized that it was even worse, or even better. In reality, there is no controversy, contrary to what some titles might suggest.
When you read the Télé 7 jours article , he rectifies the truth by no longer speaking of controversy but of simple “flat”. There is still a hell of a difference between a downside and a controversy. But what is this story again? It’s not even the tale, or the cartoon, but the attraction of Disneyland. Excuse me, this may be snobbery, but I find it hard to think of “censorship” and “merry-go-round” in the same sentence . Ultimately, the word “critical” seems more accurate to me.
So I learn that there is a Snow White attraction that has just been redone. Two American journalists from the SF Gate (a San Francisco news site)at the beginning of their article : “Let’s start by sorting it out: Snow White’s enchanted wish, the revamped merry-go-round that replaced Snow White’s spooky adventures at Disneyland, is really good.” We cannot say that they did not take precautions. (We can clearly see that they are used to grotesque polemics and that they wanted to protect themselves from it, in vain since their devious words are repeated as far as France.)
They are surprised that at the end of the attraction’s journey, the company has added a scene titled “The True Kiss of Love”, pointing out that a true kiss of love can hardly be exchanged when one of the two people is in a coma and never hinted that she was okay. That’s all they write. Their astonishment. No anger, no cry to demand the removal of the attraction, no call for a boycott.
The Scarecrow Of “Cancel Culture”
No matter how hard I look, I don’t see the problem. But obviously there must be one since we are talking about a “controversy” that crosses an ocean. Or, simply, I am making a hypothesis: we have noticed that this kind of subject clicks. That as soon as we put controversy + feminism + cancel culture, we are sure to generate traffic and buzz. So we throw ourselves on the slightest American article even if it means distorting it. (Also works for individuals who want to grow their social media audience .) Which wouldn’t matter if it didn’t give the general impression that hordes of decolonial feminists want to ban half of Western heritage works. While this is wrong. We would be satisfied with a third.
I’m kidding. I personally have little appetite for censorship in any form. But waving the scarecrow of cancel culture is good for some people. There would be a lot of research to be done on fake news about feminism (and anti-racism). We create controversial sequences from scratch by making an ill-defined group called “the feminists” say things that they have never said.
Back to our Snow White. I remembered reading some very interesting things on the subject a few years ago (because this story comes up regularly). This time, we are focusing on the merry-go-round, a subject in my opinion null and void, but we have already mentioned this problematic kiss. The difficulty is that no one is talking about the same thing. Because, as this fascinating article reminds us (I agree less with the part on the psychology of the characters, but let’s move on), there is no original version of the tales. It’s like that. They come from oral tradition. They are rewritten at each epoch and at the same time modified.
An Oral Tale Subject To Reinterpretations
Perrault moralized these tales, the Grimm’s re-Christianized them. So, nowadays, if an author wants to release a new version of Snow White by changing the ending, what’s the problem? This is what we have always done. (On the topicality of a work, read this great text that I had already mentioned by Audrey Alwett .) For my part, I read Grimm’s tales to my children by recon textualizing them and I found it fascinating to reflect with them on the evolution of the status of women over time.
What is spicy about Snow White is that we consider that there is a “real” story of Snow White, an original version therefore. Simply because the cartoon has imposed itself. The version that we will consider “original” is that of Disney. But there again, we could remake a cartoon about Snow White, that would not detract from that of 1937. There would be censorship if we banned this feature film or made it available only in a version that would have been modified without the author’s consent. However, none of this has ever been on the agenda.
Parents may choose not to show this film to their children and prefer other works to it. It is their right. Just as my mother had decided that we would never screw a toe at Euro-disney and instead, she chose to take me to Parc Astérix. However, it had not censored Euro-disney and the park has managed to recover from the non-sale of our two places.