Out There Versus Mother Knows Best English Essay

2079 words - 9 pages

English Draft- Out There/ When Will My Life Begin?
We’ve all felt trapped in the confines of our parent’s grasp, some more than others. But, what’s the point in whinging about over protective parents? They only want the best for you. Try being locked in a tower or a cathedral for your whole childhood, it’s definitely worse than not being allowed to go to that party. In the Disney songs When Will My Life Begin? from Tangled and The Hunchback of Notre Dame’s Out There, both protagonists sing about being trapped. Which, considering their circumstances… it’s totally legit. They appear as seemingly harmless ‘I-want’ songs we can all relate to, yet there are underlying messages which encourage children to be ungrateful. Sure, on the surface there’s reason to sympathise with these youths. But there’s more to these lyrics than that. When we interrogate these lyrics, we see that they’re stereotyping parental figures as villains – merely playing into the teenage drama of “you don’t understand me!” “you don’t know what it’s like to be a teenager” waa waa. If we take these songs in conjunction with one another we’ll see that they both reveal complexity through the inherent underlying message that these children - who are loved deeply by their parents - needlessly vilify them for their own ego. And I’m not putting up with that any longer. I’m sure you’re on the same page as me – adults aren’t the enemy. And we shouldn’t let Disney continue to espouse this base belief.
In both songs, the protagonists are locked away – which, sure, might not be nice, but it’s for their own good and the good of others. Yes, Mother Gothel kidnapped and imprisoned Rapunzel to selfishly use her magical healing-slash-anti-aging golden hair and convinced her the world is a dangerous place where ruffians would try to hurt her or use her gift for themselves. Yes, she’s hypocritical, but she is right about telling Rapunzel that people would exploit her, so, in a way, being locked up is for her own good. It’s a shame she can’t see things this way. Within the first few stanzas, Rapunzel sings about how she occupies her days. [ppt:”Then after lunch…”] On the surface, it appears she’s making the best of a bad situation - satisfied with her endless spate of hobbies, but she nevertheless indicates that she feels trapped. Whether this is by the tower, by her ‘mother’- who knows? There’s an endless list of things teenagers whine about. Let’s look a little closer. Irony is used in the line “And I’ll reread the books if I have time to spare”, as she clearly has nothing else to do as she’s stuck in a tower. Rapunzel is clearly aware of this fact, and although she appears content, it’s obvious through her use of irony, that she is not – which, frankly is quite ungrateful towards her mother. Rather than making it appear as though she’s been stuck in a prison, Mother Gothel has given her things to enjoy her life. Polysyndeton in this chunk of the song certainly brings rhythm through the repetit...


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