• ADHD books published by NorthEast Books & Publishing, by Association for Youth, Children and Natural Psychology
  • ADHD books published by NorthEast Books & Publishing, by Association for Youth, Children and Natural Psychology


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Complete and interesting biography of Walt Disney, albeit a book that projections adulation on the persona of Disney at times.

The Disney Version: The Life, Times, Art and Commerce of Walt Disney Richard Schickel

Interesting biography of Walt Disney, unique in its scope, not a glossy version, but real life--behind the scenes at Disney studios.

Team Rodent: How Disney Devours the World, by Carl Hiaasen

Disney is not without its share of critics. This is one example of a Florida resident journalist who rakes a bit of muck against the Disney corporation, which he obviously dislikes.

The Mouse that Roared: Disney and the End of Innocence Henry A. Giroux (Author), Grace Pollock

This is a more serious analysis and criticism of Disney culture, written from an academic perspective.

To many people, the name Disney has become synonymous with childhood innocence and squeaky-clean fantasy. But in this polemical, didactic work, Penn State education professor Giroux (Channel Surfing) charges that Disney is in fact a powerful corporation whose ideology is largely predicated on getting the consumer to buy Disney products, is far from innocent.

Giroux tackles Disney's theme parks, its recent forays into education and its movies in an attempt to expose how Uncle Walt's legacy is eroding democracy and endangering our nation's youth. He disparages Disneyland and Disney World for whitewashing history and casting America's past in a nostalgic light, excluding any mention of slavery, civil unrest, racial tension or war.

Disney's movies, argues Giroux, promote sexism and racism ("bad" characters speak with thick foreign accents, or in inner-city jive; female characters, however strong, depend on the men around them for identity) and encourage massive consumer spending while assuming the guise of innocuous family fun.

From Booklist: *Starred Review*
Giroux is an author of many books and articles on education, politics, and corporate influence. This highly critical examination of the Disney corporation explores the scope of influence that Disney has over the developing minds (and bodies) of children as it uses the facade of innocence and nostalgia marketing to promote consumerism over values such as reading and creative play, which are known to stimulate intelligence and social interaction better than the passive viewing of television and movies.

Giroux asks us to reevaluate the seemingly innocuous animated Disney productions and theme parks, which focus on a safe, sanitized, middle-class white depiction of the American ideal, while promoting racial and sexual stereotypes in films such as Aladdin and The Little Mermaid.

This updated and expanded edition (with the help of coauthor Pollock) includes a discussion on Disney's focus on marketing toward the lucrative “tween” segment, as well as two new chapters, "Globalizing the Disney Empire" and "Disney, Militarization, and the National Security State after 9/11." Well researched and well written, despite the academic jargon. --David Siegfried

The Revised Vault of Walt: Unofficial Disney Stories Never Told (2012), by Jim Korkis, Bob McLain (Editor), Diane Disney Miller (Contributor)

This is the first of several volumes of Disney stories that includes material from Walt Disney's daughter Diane Disney Miller. Writer and Historian Jim Korkis relates entertaining Walt Disney stories in several volumes. This is the first.

The Vault of Walt: Volume 2: More Unofficial Disney Stories Never Told

The Unauthorized Story of Walt Disney's Haunted Mansion (2014), by Jeff Baham, Bob McLain (Editor), Rolly Crump (Foreword)

Everything you ever wanted to know about Disney World's famous Haunted Mansion, but that you were really afraid to ask, is here for those who have to know.

Disney During World War II: How the Walt Disney Studio Contributed to Victory in the War. (Hardcover), (2014) by John Baxter

Beyond legend, a part of WWII history, Walt Disney's fascination with aircraft and vivid imagination changed the course of WWII in favor of the Allied Forces, which subsequently relied on airpower to defeat Germany and its accomplices.

Setting Limits with Your Strong-Willed Child : Eliminating Conflict by Establishing Clear, Firm, and Respectful Boundaries , by Robert J. MacKenzie Ed.D.

Some school psychologists believe that parents need to set firm limits for children in today's permissive society, for children to be able to behave and perform well in school. This book helps parents to set appropriate but reasonable limits for difficult children.

The Whole-Brain Child: 12 Revolutionary Strategies to Nurture Your Child's Developing Mind, by Daniel J. Siegel, Tina Payne Bryson

"Siegel and Bryson reveal that an integrated brain with parts that cooperate in a coordinated and balanced manner creates a better understanding of self, stronger relationships, and success in school, among other benefits. With illustrations, charts, and even a handy 'Refrigerator Sheet,' the authors have made every effort to make brain science parent-friendly." —Publishers Weekly

Artist to Artist: 23 Major Illustrators Talk to Children About Their Art

Anthology featuring Maurice Sendak, Robert Sabuda, Rosemary Wells, and Eric Carle, twenty-three of the most honored and beloved artists in children’s literature talk informally to children—sharing secrets about their art and how they began their adventures into illustration. Fold-out pages featuring photographs of their early work, their studios and materials, as well as sketches and finished art create an exuberant feast for the eye that will attract both children and adults.

Self-portraits of each illustrator crown this important anthology that celebrates the artists and the art of the picture book. An event book for the ages.

Discovering Great Artists: Hands-On Art for Children in the Styles of the Great Masters (Bright Ideas for Learning) MaryAnn F. Kohl, Kim Solga

MaryAnn F. Kohl is the coauthor of First Art and the author of Preschool Art. Kim Solga is the editor or coauthor of several books in the Art and Activities for Kids series, including Art Fun! and Craft Fun!

Great American Artists for Kids: Hands-On Art Experiences in the Styles of Great American Masters (Bright Ideas for Learning) MaryAnn F. Kohl, Kim Solga

Fun and easy art-appreciation activities abound in this resource that features 75 American artists from colonial times to the present. A brief biography for each artist tells why his or her work is important, and a kid-tested art activity tries out the artist’s approach. For Georgia O’Keeffe, the activity is a desert painting; for Frederic Remington, a face cast; for Leroy Nieman, a sketch of athletes; and for James Whistler, a clay engraving.

Projects stress the creative process and encourage kids to try unusual techniques such as block printing, soak-stain, and stone carving as they learn about architecture, drawing, painting, photography, and sculpture. A resource guide provides a glossary of art terms, a list that groups the artists by style, a list of the artists’ birthdays, an index of art supplies, and websites for viewing art online.

Tao of Pooh and Te of Piglet Boxed Set Benjamin Hoff

This provides a remarkable comparison between the original Winnie the Pooh stories and Taoist writings.

Living Without the Screen: Causes and Consequences of Life without Television (Lea's Communication) Marina Kromar

Living Without the Screen provides an in-depth study of those American families and individuals who opt not to watch television, exploring the reasons behind their choices, discussing their beliefs about television, and examining the current role of television in the American family. Author Marina Krcmar answers several questions in the volume: What is television? Who are those people who reject it? What are their reasons for doing so? How do they believe their lives are different because of this choice? What impact does this choice have on media research?

This volume provides a current, distinctive, and important look at how personal choices on media use are made, and how these choices reflect more broadly on media’s place in today’s society.

A compelling exploration of the motivations and rationales for those who choose to live without television, this book is a must-read for scholars and researchers working in children and media, media literacy, sociology, family studies and related areas. It will also be of interest to anyone with questions about media usage and the choices families make regarding the role of media in their lives.

365 TV-Free Activities You Can Do With Your Child: Plus 50 All-New Bonus Activities Steven J. Bennett, Ruth Bennett

This was a great find in a first-grade classroom in Roseville, Newark, NJ.

365 Ways to Unplug Your Kids (for awhile anyway): How to have fun without TV or computer Ted Burbank

This book is designed to be used as a source of ideas and a listing of choices of things to do instead of watching TV or playing computer and video games. Activities segregated into twenty two categories for convenience and ease of use.

The Psychology of Harry Potter: An Unauthorized Examination Of The Boy Who Lived (Psychology of Pop Culture)

The dark world of Harry Potter wizardry and occult is examined under the psychologists microscope in this interesting and insightful look into J. K. Rowling's constructed universe.

The Psychology of the Simpsons: D'oh! (Psychology of Popular Culture series) Alan S. Brown, Chris Logan

If you want to go a little deeper with The Simpsons, this is the place.

The Psychology of Superheroes: An Unauthorized Exploration (Psychology of Popular Culture) Robin S. Rosenberg, Jennifer Canzoneri

Superheroes such as Superman and Spiderman have been described in terms of a Messiah-persona for children. Young children often cannot discern the difference between fantasy and reality. This book is the first to explore the subject of Superheroes from a psychology perspective.

Schoolgirls: Young Women, Self Esteem, and the Confidence Gap Peggy Orenstein

Orenstein, who has written about girls for nearly two decades (Schoolgirls), finds today's pink and princess-obsessed girl culture grating when it threatens to lure her own young daughter, Daisy. In her quest to determine whether princess mania is merely a passing phase or a more sinister marketing plot with long-term negative impact, Orenstein travels to Disneyland, American Girl Place, the American International Toy Fair; visits a children's beauty pageant; attends a Miley Cyrus concert; tools around the Internet; and interviews parents, historians, psychologists, marketers, and others.

While she uncovers some disturbing news (such as the American Psychological Association's assertion that the "girlie-girl" culture's emphasis on beauty and play-sexiness can increase girls' susceptibility to depression, eating disorders, distorted body image, and risky sexual behavior), she also finds that locking one's daughter away in a tower like a modern-day Rapunzel may not be necessary. Orenstein concludes that parents who think through their values early on and set reasonable limits, encourage dialogue and skepticism, and are canny about the consumer culture can combat the 24/7 "media machine" aimed at girls and hold off the focus on beauty, materialism, and the color pink somewhat. With insight and biting humor, the author explores her own conflicting feelings as a mother as she protects her offspring and probes the roots and tendrils of the girlie-girl movement. (Jan.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Cinderella Ate My Daughter: Dispatches from the Front Lines of the New Girlie-Girl Culture Peggy Orenstein

Troubled by the 1990 American Association of University Women report on the loss of self-esteem by American girls between the ages of nine and 15, journalist Orenstein sought the human stories behind the statistics. She worked for a year with girls from two California schools, interviewing students, their families, teachers, and the administrators of the two schools. She also observed classes, school ground behavior, and home life.

Not aiming for an academic study, Orenstein places information from various studies in footnotes to the children's narratives. Her text focuses instead on situations ranging from subtle but definite discouragement of female students to a blatant devaluing of all students. Although there were other factors involved, she concentrates on the stories from school in describing the wrenching and all-too-typical conditions many girls face. Recommended for public libraries, high school libraries, and academic libraries with women's studies or education collections. Sharon Firestone, Ross-Blakley Law Lib., Arizona State Univ., Tempe - Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

What's Wrong with Cinderella (off-site), New York Times Magazine, Peggy Orenstein

Drawing Faces - Internet-linked (Usborne Art Ideas) Rosie Dickins, Jan McCafferty, Fiona Watt, Carrie A. Seay, Howard Allman

Children similarly love this book. There is nothing more thrilling than for a child or teen to draw the human face and see how close they actually come to the reality.

Planet Earth, BBC Video

One of the best nature videos ever made. Spectacular footage from all over the world. Rare footage, exciting. All in the family can learn and enjoy. 11 Part Series. This is the complete version. Enjoyed it thoroughly! Turn on nature films instead of horror films for a more well-adjusted child.

501 TV-Free Activities for Kids (501 TV-Free Kids) by Diane Hodges

There are a number of books like this that parents and teachers can use for ideas keeping their children busy in positive, screen-free activities.

How to Unspoil Your Child Fast: A Speedy, Complete Guide to Contented Children and Happy Parents by Richard Bromfield

The following 13 books for children are from the AYCNP list of 200 of the
Best Books for Children

Explore a Tropical Forest - Hardcover Pop-up Book by Peggy D. Winston , also Strange Animals of the Sea

Part of a series of books, as described on the main books list page here, kids love this series and are attracted to it, being somewhat interactive.

The Reason for a Flower by Ruth Heller

Good early childhood choice for girls through third grade. Girls do like this book (in class).

Here Is the African Savanna (Web of Life), by Madeleine Dunphy, Tom Leonard

Delightful poem with delightful pictures through 3rd grade.

Noah and the Ark Paul Guernsey, Lori Lohstoeter, Kelly McGillis

Based on Biblical account, accurate in most details, delightfully written for children, imparting good moral lesson on doing good rather than bad.

Almost Gone: The World's Rarest Animals Steve Jenkins

Grade 2 book of immense interest and importance for children. This is very nicely done for children.

Secret Place by Eve Bunting

Almost all of Eve Bunting's books are of worth and superior quality. This early childhood book takes children on a journey with a city boy who finds a "secret place" of wilderness.

Once Upon a Springtime (Hello Reader, Level 2) Jean Marzollo, Jacqueline Rogers

Beautiful (non-violent) "Bambi alternative" featuring deer and fawn for early childhood, grades 2 and younger.

All About Deer (All About Series)
by Jim Arnosky

This is a great concept book teaching positive values and love of nature. The book is good for children from 1st through the 3rd grade, even some 4th graders. The illustrations are a bit skimpy, as are the graphics. It is a good book for parents to read to children.

Into the Sea Brenda Z. Guiberson, Alix Berenzy

Strikingly and colorfully delightful, educational for young children.

When the TV Broke Harriet Ziefert, Mavis Smith

Clever story children love, and that would solve a lot of problems if it actually happened.

Draw 50 Animals Lee J. Ames

For children with a little artistic interest, a good place to start.

Akiak: A Tale From the Iditarod
by Robert J. Blake

Adventure picture book for young readers

Snowflake Bentley Jacqueline Briggs Martin, Mary Azarian

Based on true life work of American snowflake photographer. Ages 5 through 8.

I Spy Animals Paperback (2012), by Jean Marzollo, Illustrated by Walter Wick

Kids love the I Spy format. This book is based on the previous edition for young children, and is suitable for children of all ages, through 12 years old.

I Spy Little Animals Paperback (1998) by Walter Wick

I spy little animals is for preschool children.

National Geographic Animal Encyclopedia: 2,500 Animals with Photos, Maps, and More! (Hardcover; 2012), by Lucy Spelman

One of the few books on Amazon to have 5 star rating with 310 reviews. This is a great venture into the real animal kingdom for children and teens of all ages---a wonderful gift!

The Animal Book: A Collection of the Fastest, Fiercest, Toughest, Cleverest, Shyest—and Most Surprising—Animals. (2013). by Steve Jenkins

Another 5-star Amazon book with 50 reviews, this book is a treasure for kids. Get kids away from cartoon fantasy into realities of the earth! Some children will pore over the pages for hours, over and over again.

Page updated: November 14, 2015

Walt Disney Biography
-------------and the Psychology of Children's Cartoons

"Walt Disney Biography" page was reviewed and edited by assistant professor of literature in English literature at University of Birmingham, Dr. Louise Kane, BA Hons, MA (University of Oxford), PhD (De Montfort).

Walt Disney Biography Introduction

Walt Disney, December 5, 1901-December 15, 1966. Father of two daughters, as one might expect Disney was something of a work-a-holic, a chain smoker who liked to smoke his cigarrettes down to the butt. After Disney's death, his wife Lillian remmarried and died in 1997 at 98 years of age. Lillian stated that Disney was a wonderful father and grandfather and that he  was a good husband to her. Disney lived in pain the last years of his life, and died of cancer.
Walter Elias "Walt" Disney was born December 5, 1901, in Chicago, IL, USA.

Walt Disney, December 5, 1901 - December 15, 1966. Father of two daughters, as one might expect Disney was something of a work-a-holic, a chain smoker who liked to smoke his cigarrettes down to the butt. After Disney's death, his wife Lillian remmarried and died in 1997 at 98 years of age. Lillian stated that Disney was a wonderful father and grandfather and that he was a good husband to her. Disney lived in pain the last years of his life, and died of cancer at the age of 65.

Disney’s mother and father, Flora and Elias Disney, had moved to Chicago in 1890. In 1906, when young Walt was four years old, the family made another move—this time to Marceline, Missouri, where they purchased a small farm. Life on the farm was tough and Elias struggled to raise his family.

After four years of back-breaking work, the family sold out their farm, barely breaking even on their initial investment. With four years’ hard work and nothing to show for it, the family then found themselves in Kansas City in early 1911. However, Walt’s experience living in Marceline had a profound effect on his later life. It was on the farm that he learnt to draw, copying pictures from the cover of his father’s favourite socialist magazine, Appeal to Reason.  

In Kansas City young Walt, now a student at Benton Grammar School, had his first exposure to movies in a nearby theatre. In the early 1910s, movies were a nascent phenomenon. Largely the creation of Thomas Edison, working in New Jersey, motion pictures came into existence in the mid-1890s, but by the years 1904-1914, movie theatres proliferated throughout the United States and other parts of the world [1].

Millions in the United States attended movie theaters on a weekly basis by 1914. Disney became enamored with the movies and they became a regular part of his life. He courted his future-wife, Lillian, by taking her to the movies.

Vaudeville and burlesque were also influences on Disney’s early life; at Benton Grammar School his classmate Walter Pfeiffer’s family were avid theatre-goers and Disney began spending increasing amounts of time with them. Disney also continued his drawing and sketching, especially caricatures, which he created for 25-cents apiece in a local barber shop. For the better part of his childhood and into his teenage years he had an arduous newspaper route, for which he received only a small allowance, his father taking most of the money for family expenses.

In 1917, Elias Disney moved his family back to Chicago. Now 16, Walt briefly attended McKinley High School and took night classes in drawing at the Chicago Academy of Fine Arts. After a brief spell as the cartoonist for the school newspaper, Disney dropped out of school and began a stint working in France as an ambulance driver with the Red Cross. In 1919, the 17 year old Disney moved back to Kansas, where he began to develop his career as a cartoonist.

After working for several advertising agencies, including A. V. Cauger and the Kansas City Film Ad Company, Disney decided to establish his own animation company with Fred Harman, a former co-worker at the Ad Company. At this point Disney’s “Laugh O’Gram” cartoons became hugely popular in Kansas. His empire had begun.

Yet this early success was short-lived. Thwarted by financial concerns, Disney and Harman’s firm soon went bankrupt. Undeterred, in late 1923 Disney decided to set up another studio, this time in Hollywood, with his brother Roy O. Disney acting as his business partner.

Here, Disney continued work on the Alice Comedies he’d begun back in Kansas, as well as producing the Oswald the Lucky Rabbit cartoon series and beginning work on a new character: Mickey Mouse. It was at this point that another important event in Disney’s life took place. In early 1925, he had hired Lillian Bounds as a celluloid painter. The pair soon fell in love and married in July of that year.

Walter Disney and D. Wernher von Braun.  Von Braun served as technical advisor on three space-related television films that Disney produced in the 1950s. Together, von Braun (the engineer) and Disney (the artist) used the new medium of television to illustrate how high man might fly on the strength of technology and the spirit of human imagination. Von Braun was Disney's space consultant, and helped to shape Tommorowland of Disney world, as well as some other futuristic works of Disney.

Disney Biography - Disney and Politics

Walt's father was a socialist, in part influenced by his family’s English and Irish roots. Despite copying cartoons from Appeal to Reason, Disney soon deviated from his father's socialist persuasions and became increasingly conservative, in the American political tradition (more along the lines of Reagan's ideology), as he got older. He became staunchly anti-communist, as Hollywood, of which Disney was now a part, was affected by labor strikes and struggles with perceived communist ideologies. Although Disney felt he would be a political cartoonist, he ended up pursuing a genre that, in the early 1920s, was gaining popularity: children's cartoons.

Walt Disney serving as an ambulance driver in Europe at the close of World War I. Disney agonized to be a part of the war effort, and was finally accepted at the close of the war.

Disney's first cartoons: Mickey Mouse

The first children's cartoons started appearing from before 1914. Felix the Cat (not Disney) preceded Mickey Mouse. Although many of us can still remember the TV jingle, "Felix the Cat, the wonderful, wonderful cat, whenever he gets in a fix he reaches into his bag of tricks," Felix failed to gain the huge success that Mickey Mouse achieved. One of the reasons for this was the cartoon’s characterisation. Disney felt that Felix the Cat never evolved, remained two-dimensional, and didn't grow in personality.

Mickey Mouse was different, and much of Disney's own animated personality was incorporated into the Mickey persona. When Mickey Mouse was first created he was to be known as Mortimer Mouse. Lillian objected and the name was changed to Mickey.

The origins of Mickey Mouse can be traced to the problems Disney experienced with the Oswald the Lucky Rabbit series. Despite the popularity of Oswald, Universal Pictures, the cartoon’s distributor, appropriated Disney's character and, in 1928, attempted to reduce the fee Disney received for the cartoon’s production.

Disney had not taken the necessary legal steps to protect his creation and, left with little room for manoeuvre, had no choice but to create a new character. He morphed his rabbit into a mouse, changing the ears, coloring and body. Oswald the Lucky Rabbit had become Mickey Mouse.

While several figures influenced Mickey Mouse, with many recognising that the creation of Mickey Mouse was in part indebted to Charlie Chaplin, Disney stated that Mickey Mouse was a creation devoted to Horatio Alger. Alger was a 19th-century American writer who had studied under Henry W. Longfellow with the hopes of becoming a poet. He wrote scores of novels concerning the American Dream, of a poor boy becoming rich through hard work and diligence.

For a time he was a minister, but was found guilty of molesting young boys. Nonetheless, Alger’s novels became a popular American literary tradition during the early 1900s and his portrayal of poor but honest young boys ‘made good’ echoes through the affable character of Mickey Mouse [2].

Mickey Mouse's first film wasn't “Steamboat Willy” as most of us might think, but rather it was a flick of Mickey humorously flying a small plane, "Plane Crazy". This was a reflection of Disney's infatuation with airflight, influenced by the Russian militarist Alexander P. deSeversky's Victory Through Air Power. His second cartoon feature was that of dancing skeletons, a horror-spoof. Disney next featured Mickey Mouse in “The Gallopin' Gaucho”. Neither of the first two Mickey flicks were successful, until finally Disney created “Steamboat Willy”, which succeeded in iconizing Mickey Mouse.

While Disney, like his father before him, was not a heavy drinker—he enjoyed the odd scotch in the evening as an adult after he had become successful—he was a heavy smoker. He provided the voice for the original Mickey Mouse, until this excessive smoking rendered his voice incapable of carrying the character, at which point another actor, Jimmy MacDonald, took over the role [3]. Disney received a medal from the League of Nations for his Mickey Mouse creation. He met with a number of presidents, receiving a medal from Lyndon Johnson, and was even received by such politicians as Mussolini.

Disney and his Family

In December of 1933 Lillian gave birth to a little girl, Diane Maria Disney. The Disneys later adopted a second little girl, Sharon Mae, in December 1936. Walt and Lillian remained together until his death of cancer and circulatory failure in December 1966. Although, the California-based Disneyland had been open for more than decade, work on Disney World, in Orlando, Florida, was only just beginning. The plans for Disney World were still being approved by the city officials and Walt never got to see the project come to fruition.

After their initial venture in 1923, Disney’s brother Roy remained his business partner and continued to work with the Disney empire even after Walt’s death. The more sensible and level-headed of the pair, Roy frequently got into blowout fights with his impetuous brother Walter, who had something of a volatile temper, but after these fights it would mostly be Walt who first attempted to go make amends.

While trying to get started in finishing Peter Pan after the war, Walt and Roy got into one of their many angry shouting matches. Roy yelled back at Walter, "Look you're letting this place drive you to the nuthouse. That's one place I'm not going with you!" Walt later tried to reconcile saying, "Isn't it amazing what a horse’s ass a fellow can be sometimes." Both smiled and the argument was assuaged.

Perpetually aware of his temper, Walt’s family and employees were cautious with him. On one occasion, he reached across the dinner table and slapped one of his daughters across the face. When he went to work he looked forlorn. An employee asked him what was wrong, so he told her. "There must have been a good reason," the worker said. "Damn right," Disney replied, “she gave me that dirty Disney look." Disney’s older daughter, Dianne, is said to have inherited his hot temper, frequently clashing with her father, whereas his younger daughter—the "little girl" of the family—apparently did not inherit Walt’s fiery disposition.

On the other hand, despite the aforementioned occasional incidents, Disney was considered by his family to be a good father. His wife spoke fondly of him, both as a husband and father, and the Disney family is very loyal to their father to this day.

Disney, a workaholic chain-smoker with a hot-head and explosive temper, was good to his family and others, and was consequently very well-liked. Remembered in his NY Times obituary as a “weaver of fantasies,” he was well-known for his wicked, self-deprecating sense of humor [4]. Although he was very ambitious with his ideas, he didn't take himself too seriously, as is reflected in his humorous work, a quality that gives to his most fondly remembered characters their unique brand of folksy appeal that has lasted for generations.

Disney, Child Abuse and Implications for Disney Fantasies and Films

Disney was the victim of physical child abuse himself from his boyhood years until the time he was 14, his father apparently thrashing Walt and his brother often with whatever he could get his hands on [5].

Disney's rendition of Pinocchio clearly reflects his childhood experience of being physically abused as  a child by his father. One scene in Disney's Pinocchio movie is almost an exact representation of Disney's experience with his father's beatings.

The last event of child abuse occurred when Walt was 14 years old. Unhappy with his speed of work, his father sent him to the basement for a beating. His older brother Roy shouted out encouragement, "don't let him do it to you again, don't let him treat you like a boy." When his father grabbed the handle of a hammer to beat Walt, Walt grabbed it from his hands and held his father's arms. His father broke down and cried and never beat him again.

Interestingly, a scene in the animation Disney film Pinocchio so vividly corresponds with this experience of Walt at 14 that it is striking. It demonstrates that memories of child abuse are long-lasting, even for adults many years later.

Disney's own troubled upbringing is a reminder that often times child abuse takes place behind the scenes, and that it is passed on from generation to generation, but at the same time, that it is possible to break that chain of abuse. Some children find their escape in fantasy. However, children and victims of abuse need to be anchored; they need nurturers and protectors.

Those working within the education sector, both in the United States and other countries, play a vital role in assisting and caring for children. In some states in the U.S. and other countries, there is a need for early childhood or special education teachers. Preschool and Kindergarten teachers of high quality are of much value and special education teachers perform a vital role in caring for children with special needs.

Writing prior to WWI, Sigmund Freud made the accurate comment that we are enamored by fairy tales (in Germany and other European countries, Cinderella, Snow White and Sleeping Beauty had existed as folk tales for centuries before the Brothers Grimm began to collect and document them in written forms in the 1700s) as a result of trying to regain the childhood that we may have lost through oppression experienced in these formative years. This seems to be true of Disney. His abusive childhood may have led him on a campaign to create the perfect fantasy world that he did not experience as a boy.

One co-worker observed that Disney worked with an almost demonic fervor, like he was being driven by demons. While Disney was a creator, his past apparently still haunted him and his workaholism in creating and re-creating childhood fantasies may have had deeper psychological roots nurtured by his efforts to escape from the past.

Sigmund Freud astutely observed that our interest as adults or children in the fantasy world of fairy tales is often the result of trying to rediscover or preserve a childhood that may have been lost due to abuse. It seems likely that, at least in part, Walt Disney’s desire to create an ideal fantasyland for children may have been driven by this motivation.

Sigmund Freud astutely observed that our interest as adults or children in the fantasy world of fairy tales, is often the result of attempting to regain a childhood that may  have been lost due to abuse. This may have likely been  the case with Walt Disney and part of what drove him to create an ideal fantasyland for children.

Mickey Mouse - "a little idol"
Mickey Mouse became bigger than even his creator. Referring to Mickey Mouse as a "little idol," Disney said, “We’re restricted with the mouse…[h]e's become a little idol. The duck can blow his top and commit mayhem, but if I do anything like that with the mouse, I get letters from all over the world. 'Mickey wouldn't act like that,' they say."

Violence in Children's Cartoons

Disney was not a purist when it came to artworks, nor was he an idealist: "give the people what they want," he proclaimed. His driving ambitions were success-oriented; popularity and commercialism played a vital role in his choices. He encouraged a young artist to abandon pure art in favor of money and popularity. This was especially true during the making of such movies as Peter Pan and Alice in Wonderland, when the company was under much financial pressure. Action-packed, violent scenes were deliberately added and accentuated to hook the audience and draw crowds, particularly in Peter Pan

The need for commercial gain has undoubtedly contributed to increasingly violent scenes within cartoons, a problem which has long-since attracted popular debate and continues to provoke controversy today. A recent survey revealed that 8 out of 10 Saturday morning children's cartoons contained violent characters [6].

Some journalists have described Disney movies in terms of --horror movies for children--. Horror movies, which were popular since the earliest movies were created in the late 1800s and early 1900s, were, no doubt, an influence on Disney's style of film-making, as well as those who took over his work in other Disney features such as illustrated in this scence from The Little Mermaaid and Ursala the Sea Witch.

Exposure to violence, even in cartoons, can affect a child's mental, emotional and neurological development. Children's mental health disorders, such as anxiety disorders, sleep disorders, some attentional problems and childhood depression, might be connected to exposure to frightening scenes in movies. Some children have nightmares as a result of feeling terror having watched scenes in such movies as Sleeping Beauty and Snow White.

Some modern children's cartoons, such as in this Disney cartoon, are heavy in horror, terrifying or frightening or violent scenes. When accompanied with bonding characters, including romance, it can have a strong impact in a child's emotional, psychological, even spiritual, character.
Maleficent, Dragon Incarnation - Disney Films

Because many children see children's movies such as Disney films or TV cartoons hundreds or thousands of times during their childhood years, it can have a significant impact on a child's cognitive and emotional development, establishing thought, emotional, and even behavioral patterns, which can be carried with them into adult years.

Disney Studios and War Propaganda Films During World War II

During World War II, troops occupied the Disney studios in California. Disney plunged wholeheartedly into the war effort. It was during that time that he was creating Peter Pan, Alice in Wonderland and Bambi, as well as some other projects. All of these projects were postponed until after the war, with the exception of Bambi, which continued. One animator left for the war and returned four years later, resuming his animation work on (a film concurrent with Bambi) the very same sequence that he had left behind to fight four years earlier.

During these years, the studio produced Chicken Little. Although the movie has been reproduced in recent years, it was originally a war propaganda film that depicted the evils of mass hysteria. The studio had been preparing for its wartime role since before Pearl Harbor. Disney succeeded in "exerting a vast influence on the thinking of both the public and policy makers" at a time when other movie companies were entertaining an "entertainment hungry" United States with war musicals and war movies [7]. It was a few years after the war finished that Disney started making plans for his Disneyland dream in California.

In 1941 Disney was troubled: threats from workers, dissatisfaction, political tensions and questionable alliances all combined to produce an image of Disney as a man who, at this period of his life, was saying and doing things he later realized were unwise. He had already suffered a nervous breakdown of sorts around 1931 and left for an extended vacation with his wife to recuperate and regain his health. His doctor tried prescribing treatments until the time that he returned from his rest, but on his return Disney assured him that he was no longer in need of such help. The prolonged vacation seemed to have had a positive effect, but in 1935, during the production of Snow White, he again started having the same feelings of emotional fatigue and took another extended rest, which again gave him sufficient strength to continue his work.

During the war years, Disney and his team were responsible for scores of war-training and war-propaganda movies for the navy, army, and especially the air force. Disney had read Victory Through Air Power, written by the Russian author Alexander P. deSeversky, and this book became the basis for the most pivotal of Disney's war films while also bolstering public confidence in airpower.

When Bambi, a long and arduous project, was finally completed, Disney immediately commenced work on a movie version of Victory Through Airpower, with deSeversky even coming in to assist. He [Disney] applied his skill to explaining bomb sights and factory methods with the "same zeal that he had to recounting the exploits of Mickey Mouse and Snow White" [8]. The Dwarves themselves were actually featured on a war film produced during that time period. Donald Duck also was used in a cartoon where he wakes up from a dream about working in a Germany munitions factory, with a song and the famous duck saluting Adolph Hitler scene. It delighted audiences, although it was banned in Germany.

The Disney team often did their wartime work with little thought to making money. Disney animators designed 1,400 insignia emblems for military uniforms at the mere cost of $25 each, making no money on the project. "I had to do it," Disney said, "those kids grew up on Mickey Mouse, I owed it to them."

The ideology of heavy use of air power was part of Disney's philosophy for the war and his movies on this subject had a profound influence on Winston Churchill, who sent to the United States for a copy of Victory Through Airpower. This led to a decision by Churchill to focus more on the use of airpower, which broke a deadlock in war strategy at a point when the United States and Britain were planning assaults on Germany. Churchill was in conference at the time with Roosevelt. Roosevelt was amazed by the way Disney's airplanes masterfully wiped ships off the seas. The Joint Chiefs of Staffs also viewed the film and it had a powerful influence on their war plans. The Disney movie proved to be the tie-breaker, and a huge air offensive was planned and implemented that proved to be a part of the Allied forces’ winning strategy for D-Day.

Details of ways to eliminate hydropower dams of the enemy were visualized by deSeversky and animated by Disney, before actually being carried out by the Royal Air Force, who went on to bomb the Rhineland dams in almost the exact method proposed by deSeversky and later in Disney's films.

When Walt was in Washington he was invited to a meeting with highly-placed naval officers who complained about his neglect of naval power in favor of air power. Walt stuck to his strong support for air power and it continued to be a major theme of his war effort in animated films until the end of World War II, when Disney studios resumed their emphasis on children's cartoons.

After the war, Disney was under financial pressure for hits. Alice in Wonderland, one of Disney’s first post-war projects, had the pace of a three-ring circus, but, in Disney's words, had plenty of entertainment and the potential to satisfy everyone. However, animators soon tired of the project, as did Disney, and everyone was relieved when it was finished. As it turned out, the movie wasn't financially successful. Contrastingly, Dumbo, which was made on a limited budget of less than $1,000,000, was a great success commercially.

Background of the Bambi Film and the Novel by Felix Salten

Salten's Bambi, rather than being a children's book, was one rife in violence and even a little dabbling of sex. I might easily be an R-rated movie, a

The Disney classic Bambi was the only film that continued to be produced by Disney animators during WWII. The story behind the movie is particularly interesting; the novel Bambi, ein Leben im Walde (Bambi, A Life in the Woods) by Felix Salten was first printed in 1923. Felix Salten was the pen-name of Siegmund Salzmann, a Jewish author who was born in Budapest, Hungary but grew up in Vienna, Austria. The book was translated from German into English by Whittaker Chambers, who needed to supplement his income while working at a Communist newspaper. Felix Salten wrote a sequel, entitled Bambi's Children. Salten's works also inspired The Shaggy Dog, a Disney film in the '60s. Salten, being Jewish, fled to Switzerland during the Nazi occupation.

On an interesting side note, the 1906 book Josephine Mutzenbacher - The Life Story of a Viennese Whore, as Told by Herself, was an erotic novel first published anonymously in Vienna, Austria in 1906 and has also attributed to Salten. Well-known in the German-speaking world having been in print in both German and English, over the 100+ years since its release it has sold over three-million copies, becoming an erotic bestseller described as a "pornographic classic"[9]. It has been translated into English, French, Spanish, Hungarian and Japanese, and been the subject of numerous films, theater productions, parodies, and university courses, as well as twenty sequels, and is still popular today.  

The novel Bambi and Disney’s adaptation of it function as deep symbolic representations of the perils of hunting, but also present a striking or symbolic analogy—a foreboding prophecy of sorts—of what Jews and others would experience with the ‘man hunt’ of humans by the Nazis [10]. The novel is shockingly violent at times, and glimpses of Salten's past work in pornography, are apparent in certain scenes. Incest and even lust directed towards children, or sexuality involving children, is part of the landscape in the original novel. General consensus was that Bambi was not a novel suitable for young children, but one that children would be better waiting to read until they were older. Disney's version, while containing scenes of terror, removes the sexual inferences that were part of the original novel.

Development of Disney Characters, Directing of Cartoon Features and Ideology of Disney Cartoons

Donald Duck in a post Pearl Harbor World War II war propaganda film from Disney studios. After World War II, Disney studios were transformed into war propaganda production, which lasted until the end of the war. The only movie to be produced by Disney studios during that time period, was the completion of Bambi.

In 1934, Donald Duck—often described as "the explosive Donald Duck”—made his debut in one of the Silly Symphonies cartoons in an episode entitled “The Wise Little Hen”. For Disney, “the Duck” was a flexible creation with whom he could do what he wanted. The same was not the case with "that idol" Mickey Mouse; there were certain lines that he could not cross. If he pushed the Mickey Mouse character too far, the public responded unfavorably. So, in a way, his creation became bigger than Disney himself. Donald Duck, on the other hand, did not reach the iconic proportions of Mickey Mouse and Disney, consequently, had greater liberty in the way he presented the character.

Another well-known Disney character is Snow White. A silent version of Snow White had been produced in 1915. Disney had watched it and the film would form the basis for Disney's first feature film, Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, released in 1937.

Disney acted out each part, from the evil queen to each of the dwarves, his face beaming while depicting the latter. He gave a two-hour performance when pitching the film to his production team; this performance convinced the team that Disney’s vague idea could become a major-feature movie. At the end of his performance when Disney played out the Prince’s kiss awakening the sleeping Snow White, several production team members had tears in their eyes.

In the movie, Snow White is described as a 14-year-old girl, with Prince Charming an 18-year-old. The Queen is described in Walt’s production notes as “[a] mixture of Lady Macbeth and the Big Bad Wolf,” a woman whose beauty is transient: “sinister, mature, plenty of curves, she becomes ugly and menacing when scheming and mixing her poisons. Magic fluids transform her into an old witchlike hag" [11].

Child psychology: Disney Princesses have a powerful influence on the mind and psyche of a child.

Disney movies provide a sharp dichotomy between "snow white" purity, and the darkness of pure evil and wickedness. Studying this tendency in Disney films, Angela Lawson and Greg Fouts of the University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada, note that the binary stereotyping of women as exclusively pure or exclusively evil can become deeply ingrained in a child's mind, causing the child to view people, or women specifically, as existing within sharply demarcated boundaries [12].

Snow White and the magic apple. Magic, spells, spiritism are a strong element in many of the fairy tales recreated by Disney for children.
Snow White and the magic apple - Magic, spells, and spiritism are a strong element in many of the fairy tales recreated by Disney for children.

Reinforcing the idea that Disney films can have a negative impact on how children construe the identities of others, another recent study has suggested that Disney fairy tale films can encourage fear of the mentally ill, as most of the classic cartoons feature characters who "go mad," or "crazy," usually violently, which gives a distorted image of mental illness [13].

Disney villains are 'pure evil,' even as Disney heroes and heroins are pure, providing a sharp dichotomy of good and evil in vivid characters, with little grey area. This can have an influence on the way children perceive others.
Disney films for children tend to present good and evil with sharp dichotomy, good being totally pure and innocent, while evil as totally evil and villainous. Children's perception of others may be influenced.

Disney's climatic kiss is an inherent feature in children's movies.
The 'climactic kiss' and Princess Culture affects the perceptions, thinking, actions, and experimentation of children and teens.

Although Disney fantasy movies like Snow White almost always include as a staple element the "climactic kiss," as one New York Times writer has described it, Disney preferred to leave discussions about or explicit portrayals of sex as private matters [14]. This is good advice for parents today and for film-makers in an age where children's PG and even G-rated movies often have much in the way of sexual innuendo, some of which goes over children's heads, but some of which keeps them thinking for days and weeks afterward [15].

However, the fantasy romance element of Disney movies—as epitomised in the climactic kiss—has evolved, according to the NY Times article, into a distinct type of ‘Princess Culture’ which has taken on a life of its own. Some parents are concerned with the lessons that such movies teach children, particularly the notion that continuous exposure to the idea of a Prince Charming plants idealistic seeds in the minds and hearts of impressionable little girls. Additionally, the escalating nature of the violence of children's movies is also a concern, as is the sexual content and innuendos of many children's movies today. The sexual innuendo in children's films has increased in recent years.

The Sorcerer's Apprentice was originally a poem by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, written in 1797. The poem is a ballad in fourteen stanzas.
The Sorcerer's Apprentice was originally a poem by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, written in 1797. The poem is a ballad in fourteen stanzas.

Moving away from the ‘princess’ movie, Disney’s next project after Snow White was The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, produced in 1938. Originally an old fairy tale interpreted from a poem, the film saw Mickey take on the role as the apprentice whose Sorcerer's powers ran astray disastrously. The film was choreographed from Stravinsky's “Rite of Spring” (Sacre Du Printemps), a ballet whose music, with its discord of Russian Steppes and weird dissonances, has a primitive edge to it [16].

Next came Fantasia, the follow-up to The Sorcerer's Apprentice. Made in 1940, the film now featured Mickey as the blundering Sorcerer, rather than the apprentice. A new version entitled The Sorcerer's Apprentice was released by Disney Studios in 2010. The following year, 1941, saw the release of The Reluctant Dragon, a film based on a story from the late 1800s, which portrays the Dragon as friend rather than foe. Of all the Disney films produced toward the end of World War II, only three or four were actually profitable, which put considerable pressure on Disney and the company.

Mickey Mouse as The Sorcerer's Apprentice, the idea based on a poem from the 1700s, in 1940, just 12 years after Mickey's most well-known film to date, Steamboat Willy, Mickey, now more refined in his appearance and in full color.

After Snow White, Disney produced Pinocchio, which was originally written by Carlo Collidi (Lorenzi) in 1880. Collidi saw himself in the character of Pinocchio, a boy who was always in trouble, always doing something wrong. Disney pursued the new project with great enthusiasm and was determined to make Pinocchio even greater than the preceding Snow White feature. “Pinocchio should use every ounce of force he has in his swimming to escape the whale. This should be the equivalent of the storm and the chase of the queen in Snow White," he directed.

Separation Anxiety and Horror Movies for Children

Separation anxiety is one of the emotional ploys used by Disney in children's films.
Disney's Bambi film and Lion King exploit separation anxiety and affects the emotions of some children, and plays on fears to capture their interest.

Psychologists note that many Disney films and other children's films in more recent years capitalize on the emotions involved with separation anxiety and, in that respect, can lead to emotions in children that might not be healthy in their formative years. Some have referred to Disney films as horror movies for children, although today, horror movies that are truly horrifying are part of the social landscape of a large percentage of children, with and without parents knowing what their children are watching through cable and satellite television systems. However, it can be argued that Disney movies introduced children to the idea of horror for excitement within the context of children's movies.

Another aspect of Disney movies that has drawn criticism is their use of certain words related to the occult and uncanny. One recent study published in Child Psychiatry analyzed negative stereotyping and the use of "demonizing" words in Disney films, finding an average of 5.6 per film [17]. The psychological implications for children are many, according to the study. However it is not just Disney that embraces icons of the occult; much in children's programming similarly embraces the spiritistic theme. One example is Scooby Doo, the new movie which features a long and poignant scene of voodoo euphoria. Some of the Scooby Doo books contain prolonged conversations or discussions on witchcraft, Wicca, ghosts and the paranormal in general.

Background History, Company Debt, Snow White and Cinderella

Disney moved into the 1950s with a new project in mind: the retelling of the Cinderella story. Cinderella, released in February 1950, became the first hit movie since Snow White and helped to shrink the company’s debt in the 1950s to $1,700,000. Cinderella was a French/German children's fairy tale from the 1500s recorded in Grimms’ Fairy Tales (1812). However, it is believed that the first Cinderella story originated in China in the 9th Century.

Along with themes like love, justice and the rewarding of human kindness, another pivotal, yet more implicit, theme of the Cinderella story is child abuse. The wicked stepmother and evil sisters abuse Cinderella in various ways, and this is a reason why the story is such an enduring tale: any woman or girl (or even a man or boy) who might have experienced abuse as a child can relate to this simple, yet compelling, story.

A. A. Milne, Disney, and Winnie the Pooh

A.A. Milne author of Winnie the Pooh, created his book while a soldier in England during WWI. His books was something of a fantasy to escape the war of whic he was a part, and which he disliked, and was created for his son Christopher Robin.

Written by A. A. Milne, the original Winnie the Pooh story (1926) was eventually sold by Milne’s widow to Disney and became, in 1961, the studio’s next major release. Milne is now remembered primarily as a children’s author, but he also wrote plays, novels, articles, and poems. Born in Kilburn, London, he also possessed a dry, English sense of humor that inflected his autobiography.

Christopher Robin was the name of Milne’s son. When asked by his father to consider possible names for the story’s central character—a large, friendly, yellow bear—the young boy, without stopping to think, said "Winnie-the-Pooh", the "Pooh" part of the name coming from a real swan of that name on the family property. "And so he was," recalled Milne.

Thus, the name of the famous lazy bear in the stories became Winnie the Pooh, even though traditionally "Winnie" is a girl's name while Winnie the Pooh is definitely a male bear! Unlike the story of Bambi, there is nothing scandalous about the roots of the Winnie the Pooh story, even if a couple of illustrated scenes in the Pooh series depict Christopher Robin inviting Winnie the Pooh to watch him take a bath.

Consisting of four books, the Winnie the Pooh series is simple and gentle enough for any child. The trope of a single boy or girl in the midst of fantasy creatures or animals is one that had been developed already in literary history, most notably in Lewis Carrol's Alice in Wonderland. Carrol, a pen name, was an epileptic, and quite possibly on medications for his epilepsy. Much has been written about the fantastical elements of Alice in Wonderland and their possible relationship to Carrol's severe epilepsy. Also, there has been speculation about Carrol's relationship with Alice, based on a real girl (some have said his daughter, others have said a friend of his family) but these allegations seem to be unfounded.

In the early 1900s, Milne wrote for Punch politically satirical London-based journal. The illustrator of Winnie the Pooh, Ernest Shepard, was a political cartoonist in the same paper. Although it was not published until the mid-1920s, according to what we can piece together from comments in his biography, much of Winnie the Pooh was written during WWI when Milne was in the army in England, as a diversion from the rigors of army life.

Shepard’s illustrations have remained largely unchanged since they were created in the 1920s. After the publication of the first book, the following three books gave the impression of a lazy summer vacation and were all written prior to WWII.

There are references in Winnie the Pooh that seem to reflect Milne's preoccupation with, or comic satire of, the subject of medicine for children. Two scenes taken from separate Pooh books exemplify this. In the first, Piglet is given "medicine". "MMMM...medicine," says Piglet, "I don't need any mmmm.....medicine," he says with trepidation. "Take your medicine!!!!!!" is the reply of an overbearing adult. In the second book in the series, Tigger is similarly given "medicine" to help him with "energy". At the least, this documents the idea that even during the 1920s giving medicine to children for "energy" and behavioral issues may have been a source of some controversy.

Much has been written by way of analysis of the characters of Winnie the Pooh and their significance. Eeyore, you might say, displays the traits of a sometimes volatile, depressive alcoholic. Winnie the Pooh sometime resembles an alcoholic, or a ‘binger’, when it comes to his passion for honey.

Milne was a passionate smoker, pipes being the order of the day in early-20th century England, and some of the scenes in Milne's stories remind one of a group of men sitting around a bar and ‘chewing the fat’, telling ‘fish stories’ and the like, over drafts of beer. Serious as some of his works were, unlike those of Salten, the creator of Bambi, Milne’s books for children are not Orwellian in nature but are, for the most part, innocent books for children that reflect Milne's own experiences and concerns in life, offering a childish escape into fantasy where important life-lessons can also be learned.

Winnie the Pooh, Bambi and Mickey Mouse are elaborated on this page because these characters form deep emotional bonds with children. From the earliest age, Winnie the Pooh is inculcated into children’s hearts through songs, toys and paraphernalia for babies. These type of cartoons—Winnie the Pooh, Bugs Bunny, today's Dora the Explorer, Bambi, Sponge Bob Square Pants, the Flintstones—contain emotionally-bonding characters and function as ‘soft-bonding’ cartoons. Bart Simpson and friends, Rocko’s Modern Life and Rug Rats are a little more advanced in satire and crudeness, but the same principle applies.

While considered to be "adult" cartoons, Family Guy and South Park cartoon characters, known for their off-color jokes and profanity, are probably most often viewed by children; the characters are bonding and at the same time sometimes repulsing.

There are other adult-children cartoons more advanced in terms of crudeness but these are the most well-known and most talked about in the school playground. Unlike Felix the Cat, the characters are well-developed enough that children can bond to them emotionally in some way. This bonding process lasts well into high school and, for some, an emotional bond exists with these characters well into a child’s teenage years and adulthood.

The Tao of Pooh, written by Benjamin Hoff, who had studied world religion, reveals striking parallels between Winnie the Pooh books and the Taoist holy book. Whether or not Milne was directly influenced by reading Taoist writings in his creation of Winnie the Pooh stories is not known.

Compared to these more recent cartoons, the Winnie the Pooh books offer a genteel, didactic meandering through the questions and problems involved in everyday life. Positive in their outlook, the Pooh stories promote a child-targeted, edifying type of philosophy that forms the basis of most Disney movies.

More recently, the Winnie the Pooh series has been linked with Taoism, and a best-selling book has been written entitled The Tao of Pooh, which explores the striking parallels between Taoist holy writings and the philosophy of the Winnie the Pooh stories. This vein is not just present in Milne’s work; a recent biography on Charles Schulz, the creator of the popular Snoopy and Peanuts characters, interestingly gives insight into Shulz's Buddhist persuasion and how this is reflected his comic series [18].

Walt Disney's Later Years

We know that Disney was also a passionate smoker. Despite the warnings from his doctor and family, he continued to smoke until the time he contracted lung cancer. He often smoked his cigarettes down to the butt and beyond! This habit eventually led to his physical decline and he died at the age of 67.

He had other health problems; a polo accident led to long-term back problems, for which, rather than having an operation, he made regular visits to a chiropractor. As a result, he continued suffering back pain until his death and found no relief. Disney felt that the chiropractic treatments contributed to and prolonged his back problems rather than assuaging them. In his last years, he suffered with various aches and pains and often used hot compresses throughout the night to alleviate these. 

Disney believed in God and was a non-practicing roman Catholic, but was tolerant of all religions. Christmas and Birthdays were strong Disney traditions. His eldest daughter attended Catholic school, but was married in a Protestant Church, with her husband-to-be only being baptized there shortly before the wedding. Disney's daughters had a number of grandchildren; the fifth child of the oldest daughter was named, finally, to Walter's relief, after himself.

Disney had been told by a fortune teller before his work started in earnest that he would die before his life's work was completed. It became something he never forgot and as we have seen he did, in fact, die before seeing what might be considered the greatest achievement in his name, Disney World. His brother and son-in-law remained a part of the team after Disney died, carried the work to completion, and Disney World has now been a universal symbol for more than 40 years.

The 200 best books for children list by the AYCNP provides examples of wonderful books for young children through their teen years.

Disney Biography and Psychology of Children's Cartoons - References

1. Bowen, H. G. (1955). “Thomas Alva Edison’s Early Motion Picture Experiments”. Journal of the SMPTE, 64, in Raymond Fielding ed. (1967), A Technological History of Motion Pictures, 90-6. Berkley: The University of California Press.

2. Bryman, A. (1995). Disney and his Worlds, 19. London: Routledge.

3. Gostin, N. (March 2005). Tears for a Deer. Newsweek.

4. Finch, C. (1975). The Art of Walt Disney: From Mickey Mouse to the Magic Kingdom, 66. New York: Abrams.

5. Fouts, G., Callan, M., Piasentin, K., Lawson, A. (June 8, 2006). Demonizing in Children's Television Cartoons and Disney Animated Films. Child Psychiatry and Human Development, 37 (1), 15-23.

6. Gerbner, G. & Siognorielli, N. (1988). Violence and Terror in the Mass Media: an Annotated Bibliography, 28. Connecticut: Greenwood Press.

7. Lawson, A. & Fouts, G. (2004). Mental illness in Disney animated films. Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, 49 (5), 310-314 (311).

8. Lawson, T. & Persons, A. (2004). The Magic Behind the Voices: a Who’s Who of Cartoon Actors, 19-20. Mississippi: The University Press of Mississippi.

9. Obituary: Walt Disney (16 Dec, 1966). New York Times.

10. Ornstein, P. (December 24, 2006). What's Wrong With Cinderella? New York Times Magazine.
For more on this issue, see Olfman, S. ed. (2009). The Sexualization of Childhood (Childhood in America). Connecticut: Prager.

11. Parmar, N. (Sep/Oct 2004). Lunatic Toons: Disney Films may Teach Children to Fear the Mentally Ill. Psychology Today.

12. Magill, F. (1999). The 20th Century A-GI: Dictionary of World Biography, vol. 7, 938. London: Routledge.

13. Michaelis, D. Schulz and Peanuts: a Biography. London: Harper Collins.

14. Segel H. (1993). The Vienna Coffeehouse Wits: 1890-1938, 166. London: Atlasbooks.

15. Thomas, B. (1977). The Walt Disney Biography, 145. London: The New English Library.

16. Thomas, 139.

Other Biographical References-Further Reading

Barrier, M. (2007). The Animated Man: A Life of Walt Disney. California: University of California Press.

Disney's Effect on Children, Andrew Tennyson (off-site)

For more on Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring (Sacre du Printemps), see Eliot, T. S. (Sept 1921). London Letter. The Dial.

Thomas, B. (1994). Walt Disney - An American Original. New York: Disney Editions.

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