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The character of the owl is a reoccurring theme in Disney.
In Sleeping Beauty it is a friendly and playful owl who wears Prince Charming's coat and dances with the lonely princess in hiding deep within the woods. It is a kind motherly owl in The Fox and The Hound that orchestrates the rescue to save the young orphaned fox, and later brings joy back into his life by introducing Tod to Daisy a foxy new girlfriend.
Do you recall the Owl in The Sword in the Stone, a companion to the Wizard Marlin called Dmitri? Remember his cranky disposition and clever barbs?
What a delightful character Owl is in Winnie the Pooh. Though it is a different Owl in each Disney movie, sometimes male and sometimes female, there is a pattern to the Disney myth of wisdom, a sleepy almost grumpy maturity, and a deep compassionate heart
What stories do you recall about Owls? Have you ever seen owls in the wild?
Bambi is one of my favorite Disney films because of the gentle simplicity of the story, a world of only animals and Disney's brilliant landscapes. Humans play only a sinister shadow game of being present but unseen, a role reversal of our usual experience of animals in the wild.
Included with recent releases of Bambi is a documentary of the making of Bambi, an inspiration for anyone fascinated with the animation process before computers.
Speaking of computers be sure and learn about the
Amateur SETI: Project BAMBI
and for a look at Disney and hunting view Fox and the Hound.
Bambi is a film that should be watched in silence and felt. The death of a mother, like that in the children's story Barbar a French classic enjoyed all over the world about an elephant who also loses his mother to an indiscriminate hunter, have you considered this before as a topic for children?
The Story of Babar: the Animated Series from Sailorlum creator of The Babar Fan Website
In the jungles of Asia (or is it Africa) there are many animal kingdoms (Ostrichland, Rhinoland, etc.) The kingdome of Celestville (a.k.a. Elephantland) is ruled by Babar, a kind, peace loving king. The series follows the adventures (and often misadventures) of Babar and his family and friends and, to some extent, his rival, Lord Rataxas the king of Rhinoland.
In the early episodes Babar recounts tales of his youth to his children. He tells how he was orphaned by The Hunter and raised by The Old Lady in the city of Paris. He also tells stories of his early days as king and of his various trials and misadventures. We soon learn that Rhinoland and Celestville are not on friendly terms. (Many stories are about a skirmish with Rataxas.)
The later episodes take place in the present. Here we soon discover that Rhinoland and Celestville have signed a peace treaty, (although Babar and Rataxas are certainly not good buddies). Rataxas has also sired a son who is best friends with the triplets Pom, Alexander and Flora. Many of these later episodes focus on the children. Many also focus on further conflicts or misadventures involving Rataxas. Other secondary characters also get there chance to shine in these later shows.
Why do we see the repeated theme of a dead mother in such sweet stories for young children?
How important is the tragedy in children's stories?
Consider all the fairytales you have learned, what is the tragic event in each?
What do you consider is the significance of telling such difficult ideas to children?
To the Disney