Sorry it's long. I have a lot of beliefs about these three to respond to! May get preachy!
I really hate all the hate the old princesses get, especially Snow White. She has a lot more personality than she is given credit for (more than many of the recent heroines have, too). she’s got a sassy sense of humor, she’s unbelievably emotionally strong despite the horrible abuse and near murder she went through twice (the victim blaming she and Cinderella get is rather disgusting and hypocritical), she never gave up hope about meeting her love again, she didn’t need to run around chasing boys like a desperate fool, she was confident enough (in herself, her prince, and their love) and wise enough to know he should come to her, and would- and did! I could go on. I really can't stop singing her praises.
Not to mention, I think it’s cute that she’s actually a smart little businesswoman. She ran that house like a boss. She was naive, but not enough to think the dwarfs would just let her stay for free (although I’m positive all but Grumpy would’ve happily let her). She noticed they were poor housekeepers, and as she was a talented one, so using the sense she supposedly lacks, she offered to be their maid and cook in exchange for shelter and safety (come on, what do you think she’s gonna do? work in the mines, where she’d just get in the way? sit around doing nothing and get rightfully called a lazy ingrate?). She showed good organizational skills when assigning the critters to their tasks and quite like like a mother, told the dwarfs to wash up. Who wants slobs at the table? Just because she works for them doesn’t mean they need to forget their manners. I don't see why Belle or Jasmine are wonderful for standing up to the Beast (who Belle knew wouldn't harm her) and Jafar (at first anyway, Jasmine had complete power over him) but Snow White is a brat for telling the dwarfs what to do.
The people who accuse her, Cindy, and Aurora of being “passive” and never doing anything but “sitting around” waiting for their guys- uhhh, no, You should really watch
their movies before blindly repeating what all their haters regurgitate. If you’d see them, you’d realize not a single one of the heroines of any era “sits” around. Two were under spells and thus, physically unable to save themselves. They have pretty dang good excuses.
Cinderella represents hope, that by waiting bad things out, staying strong, good things will reward you. Not to mention she would be an idiot for trying to run away- to what? Seriously I honestly would LOVE to know what people who bash Cinderella for doing the smart thing- staying- would rather she do. Please, speak up! Would you have her become a whore? Join a dangerous, backbreaking sweatshop? Do you guys forget they were NO women's shelters or abuse hotlines back then? Women were nearly powerless. Stop judging them as modern people- they are NOT MODERN. Their movies about the stories, themselves, and their reactions, NOT their adventures or action. Anyway, as Disney himself said, she wanted the prince, so she went to the castle and got him. No waiting here. He didn't rescue her, either, or even come find her himself. Of all the girls that get bashed, I am stupefied by the amount of hate Cinderella gets. Really, she's like THE perfect role model in every way. She and Belle are somewhat similar, so why is Belle seen as strong and feminist and Cinderella not?
And Aurora? Please. That girl’s birthday was ruined, she found out the man she liked couldn’t be with her, and the enormous responsibility of monarch was forced upon her. Did she throw a fit like Merida and refuse to accept her responsibility? No. Did she selfishly run away from her problems to pursue her own desires like Ariel and Jasmine? No. (And I’m not condemning them, just pointing out they did bad things too yet get little to no criticism for it, and when they do get fiercely defended.) SHE WENT UP TO THAT CASTLE CRUSHED AS SHE WAS AND PUT DUTY OVER DESIRE. That takes an amazingly strong woman. I don’t know if I would be strong enough to do that, myself.
Besides, what is so horrible about being passive? You have to be sometimes, like in bad situations where suddenly making a bad move is pretty dumb. They weren’t passive anyway; people today (especially younger people) are just too rebellious, self-centered, and can’t stand seeing others being stronger than they are, taking abuse but never giving it back, seeing women properly use their gentleness as a strength.
And why exactly are the newer princesses brave for doing reckless things, yet Snow White is stupid, a moron, has no common sense, is an idiot, when she takes the apple? Rapunzel went off with a stranger and befriended dangerous thugs. Belle (you know, the supposedly "intelligent" one) went into the west wing where Heaven knows what sort of danger might have waited for her. Jasmine ran away from home with no money and went to a stranger's house ALONE (if that isn't the equivalent or worse to what Snow White did I donno what is). Mulan endangered her whole family as well as herself by disguising as a boy and running off to war to do something that in all likelihood would probably not work (luckily it did). Pocahontas, LIKE AURORA AND SNOW, was told specifically to stay away from the strangers, but no, she's too interested (this is the "wise" one, too), even when John clearly does not look peaceful and friendly when he aims his gun at her (and yeah, the cliff thing).
I don't think I even need to go into Ariel's territory, lol, just that her foolish behavior is defending to death. She "acts like a teenager"! Okay? That's an excuse? Well, guess what? She's older and knows better
than Snow White, isn't sheltered like her, so what is her excuse? You can only use "SHE'S JUST A KID, LEAVE HER ALONE!!!" as a a valid argument for so long. Snow White and Aurora act like teenagers but no, they're simply idiots. Disney fan double standards!
Anyway, why so much hate for Snow doing what she is good at (ie housekeeping)? When a woman chooses to be a professional maid or cook or daycare teacher she is making a choice
like radical feminists say they want for women, yet when a woman chooses to do that for her own family (in Snow’s case, it was kind of both a professional job as well as for family), she is anti-feminist, weak, a doormat, etc. Such irrational hypocrisy and double standards! Really, she was a resourceful organizer, a business-savvy girl, and an enticing chef. What’s horrible about being good at cleaning? I wish I myself was that good. I barely have energy and patience to pick up my shoes after work. Is it "empowering" and progressive to live in squalor? What is so horrifying
about living for others rather than the self?
Overall, I think it’s interesting that Snow White seems to be the kind of person people either love or hate. Barely ever any neutral opinions. She’s such an icon of feminine beauty, optimism, traditional womanhood, everything that stands in stark contrast with everything our rebellious, me-first culture holds dear. Today, if you don’t act like a man with boobs, you are weak and unworthy of respect. If you respond to abuse with gracious love, you are a doormat. If you take care of a family or pursue traditionally feminine activities, you set feminism back 100 years and deserve no less than scorn. This totally defeats the purpose of real feminism, the kind our (Christian, I might add) foremothers in women’s rights wanted. It’s even against second wave feminism. Do any of you who hold this belief realize how incredibly sexist and anti-women it is? It is also sexist to men to imply their help is offensive and degrading to women but the other way around, is good.
Frankly, I wish more women weren’t so afraid to be feminine anymore or acting so threatened by traditional femininity (and for that matter, traditional manhood and chivalry), that we’d all try to have more grace and forgiveness and patience like the original heroines, who are, sadly, far better than they are ever given credit for. Their kind of humble attitudes strike our culture in the face; it does not know what to make of those with servants’ hearts. People who see modest, gentle women and insult them are losers. Not in the “HAHA LOSER FAIL” sense, but in the sense that they see they are not strong enough to try to succeed and become better people than they are, and mock people who do try. It’s “too hard” for them, so they try to drag down the winners to their level. Hey, misery loves company!
I hope this helps or at least comforts fellow Snow White fans, or anyone who likes the old girls or relates to them more. I truly wish they made ‘em like they used to (Eilonwy and Jane Porter are pretty good ones, though.) Lots of these points were borrowed or inspired by waltdisneyconfessions or an interesting thread on the SWAT7D board at imdb.com.