The "Good Girls": Exploring Features of Female Characters in Children's Animated Television.
Abstract: This study was designed to identify the frequency and portrayals of female characters in a sample of animated television shows geared for children aged six to twelve. Using a sample of thirty episodes from ten animated cartoons, this content analysis coded characters for demographic information, physical attributes, and several personality traits. Results from the present study found tha... read moret males continue to outnumber females in children's animated television nearly two to one. Female characters were also rated as skinnier and more beautiful by coders, and were more likely to be rated as good, kind, and peaceful than were male characters. Several significant associations between character sex, age, and species were also found. Qualitative analyses on gendered conversation topics from a smaller sample of episodes reveal that female character conversations are more stereotyped than males' in the educational/informational genre, but less so in particular action-adventure shows. These results and the literature discussed throughout this paper should inform parents, educators, and caregivers about the content of children's animated media as well as encourage scholars to continue research that can demonstrate the implications of regularly viewing such content.
Thesis (M.A.)--Tufts University, 2015.
Submitted to the Dept. of Child Study and Human Development.
Advisor: Julie Dobrow.
Committee: Calvin Gidney, and Jennifer Burton.
Keywords: Mass communication, Women's studies, and Psychology.read less