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Deconstructing Cartoons: Dragonball Z and Starship Troopers

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Lambert B. Cabales Paper I Professor Hope October 25, 1999 The focus of my paper was based on two cartoon shows that preview during the weekdays. The first cartoon, Starship Troopers, starts in the morning at seven thirty. It was based on a previous motion picture that was produced in the United States. The writers and creators of the cartoon are also from the United States, which will have effect on how children view the messages. Second cartoon, Dragonball Z, shows in the afternoons and in the evenings. Both times that this cartoon is previewed, children are more likely to be watching television. Unlike the Starship Troopers, this cartoon was not based on any movie. Also, the writers and creators of this cartoon are from Japan. As I had previously stated, the cultural environment of the writers and creators will have an effect on how their cartoon will be viewed by children. Both cartoons have one thing in common with each other, violence. Granted that Starship Troopers happens to be more violent than the other, being that it was based on the movie. The messages that are viewed by these cartoons tend to socialize and categorize people by gender, race, and ability. ...read more.


As I stated in the beginning, cultural environment of the writers and creators would have an effect on what kind of messages the cartoon portrays. For example, here in the United States the females are considered to weak, fragile, delicate, and are not as a capable as their male counter-parts. Plus, the nerds of the American society are envisioned to be the thin, four-eyed geek who is always on the computer or who always has his face in the books. On the attractive scale, it is considered in the society that the strong, tall, and attractive males are the ones that females dream as being their dream husband. Children can also view another separation of ability and categorization. In the cartoon, just as in the American society, whites are the majority and the non-whites are the minority. The cartoon portrays the minorities as the ones who are taking the orders and not the ones giving the orders. Children who are considered to be minorities might view themselves as being inferior to the majority. They are not as capable and have fewer opportunities as the whites. The second cartoon, Dragonball Z, is a cartoon that is also violent but not as much compared to the Starship Troopers cartoon. ...read more.


The minorities are placed also in another category that is inferior to the majority. Children would pick up on this and treat others accordingly to their status. Plus, the likelihood of the children to display such violent behavior as in the cartoon is high. Children learn from observation and are influenced through what is shown on television. The importance of the two cartoons to children is the violent, but cool action the shows produce. The violence is what attracts ratings and viewers. Accordingly, the violence depicts the changes of the societal attitudes. Violence before was not viewed on television, but now it is shown on television around the clock. In conclusion, the cartoons contribute to the influence of children's behavior. They view how the minorities are governed and judged by the majority. These cartoons are just a couple that sends messages to minorities on how they see themselves in today's society. For example, the female may find herself restricted to household-type jobs and minorities in petty routine work. Plus, the minorities opinions have very little value compared to the majorities is yet another example the children will see in these cartoons. The children will have constructed an idea of how to treat and categorize others through the viewings of these cartoons. ?? ?? ?? ?? 2 ...read more.

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