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University of Central Florida

Disney; theme parks; children’s literature; childhood; education

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Between The Lines: Children’S Literature And The Disney Theme Parks, Michaela Karis Apr 2019

Between The Lines: Children’S Literature And The Disney Theme Parks, Michaela Karis

Journal of Themed Experience and Attractions Studies

Though the Disney theme parks are a common subject of academic analysis, relatively little research has approached the parks from a literary perspective. In this paper, I apply a theory of children’s literature to the Disney parks. By tracing the similarities between the parks and children’s texts, including their use of a “double” level of address, their focus on oppositional binaries, and their deliberate elision of “adult” elements, I demonstrate how the parks legitimize themselves as both childlike and child-appropriate spaces.