Week 6: Native American Representations

“Native American women are typically presented as one of two quite different images: the American Indian princess (of which Pocahontas is perhaps the most familiar example), and the squaw (typically depicted in gendered roles like collecting and preparing food, caring for children, and so on).” (O’Barr, 2013, pg 9) #stereotypes #peterpan #nativeamericans #tigerlily #Wells

The Disney film Peter Pan shows both the American Indian princess, Tiger Lily, and the squaw. These representations are harmful to both Native Americans and women. Tiger Lily is sexualized and silent throughout the film and only serves as a love interest for Peter. Squaw (literally the character’s name), on the other hand, is a caricature of Native American women. She is portrayed as bossy mother and vilianized because of her treatment towards the main character Wendy. The film hardly represents an accurate depiction of native american women and instead focuses on stereotypes that are familiar with white audiences.

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