Deaf Little Mermaid
Deaf Little Mermaid
Disney put forth a princess with a disability. You think they would’ve by now, but nope, and this oversight spurred Italian artist Alexsandro Palombo to finally do something about it.
An artist who become partially paralyzed after having cancer (and beating it!), he saw what it was like to be disabled — an experience not many get to know intimately.
And not surprisingly he was pretty chuffed at what he experienced. When he stepped out in public his first time as someone with an obvious disability, he saw how many people just didn’t like him anymore. Pure, horrible discrimination. There’s no way around it. And he saw that there are always going to be people who’ll never give you a chance in the dating department or a chance to enter their social circle, since they see you as being too much trouble.
These people suck and need to be called out, hence Alexsandro Palombo’s brilliant idea to reimagine the famous nine Disney princesses — Belle, Ariel, Sleeping Beauty, Snow White, Mulan, Pocahontas, Jasmine, Cinderella and Tiana — as disabled Disney princesses, and challenging people to see if they’re prejudiced against people with disabilities by putting the following question on his images: “Do you still like us?”
He gave the princesses basic, mobility-related disabilities — with Mulan even being a triple amputee and a wheelchair-user. He ain’t kidding around, I’ll tell you what!
Seeing these iconic characters even changed slightly can really make people think, and that’s the most important thing at the end of the day. Among the princess images, my favorite is Snow White being pushed by Prince Charming in her wheelchair. What a beautiful positive image for young girls and women with disabilities .
Maybe … just maybe … this art project will inspire Disney to finally create a princess with a disability. And please Disney if you do, don’t put her in a pitiful role where she’s weak. Make her strong, a fighter, someone ALL women would look up to, not just girls with disabilities. Mattel created “Becky” the wheelchair-using Barbie doll. It’s finally time for Disney to follow suit, but in a much bigger way.
In the meantime, we wait. I would love to see Disney create a disabled princess in my lifetime. It would be a huge win for the disability community.