Thursday, July 9, 2009

Scrooge McDuck animation stories as a fair reflection of a capitalist relationship in the modern society

Being extremely altruistic, light-hearted bachelor Donald Duck leaves the civilian society for the sake of serving in United States’ Navy. The little brothers Billy, Willy and Dilly, left without a care-taker, are trusted to an old miser Scrooge McDuck, who turns out to be their uncle. Drake’s main feature is the itch for money; it drove him throughout his entire life, leaving him old and rich, but single and miserable in his solitude. He tries to cultivate some capitalistic values in the kids: extreme thrift, preference of high-quality goods and “useful” friendship. He builds up the process of upbringing on the strict discipline, some hardship (in spite the money that he has gotten is abundance), and some other minor sufferings. His nephews do not quite believe in his educative genius, they question his life values, and insist on hiring a baby-sitter. Not surprisingly, there are a lot of “gold-diggers” that would be flattened to serve in the house of famous millionaire. But he prefers blatant and conservative applicants to a mature Missis Cluedia, whose only wish is to live with the young boys at the same household. The irony is that being concerned with the non-materialistic side of upbringing process, she turns out to be the only person who can constrain the kids from various dangerous adventures that McDuck was unable to do using the power of money.
This animated story tries to reflect the disposition of the society actors in the American, and perhaps generally Western context. McDuck represents a tiny portion of the population that is endowed with different powers and is able to influence some economic processes in the society (his monetary reserve looks more like a state treasury rather than his honestly gained life savings), but it is unable to coup with some phenomena of social discontent (he is regularly being robbed by a band of deviants). The “organic phenomena” of the richness of McDuck gave “rise to socio-historical criticism, whose subject is wider social groupings” (Gramcsi).

1 comment:

  1. Great idea--the only real difficulty is twofold. First, I don't get a sense of a particular work here, and while a generalized analysis of Scrooge McDuck can be good, I think this might have benefited from more specific moments to analyze. Secondly, there's surely not enough actual Marx and Gramsci in here--the analysis of scrooge then is good, but would be better still if the analysis was more explicit.