Zootopia - essay

The movie Zootopia is filled with comical characters and adorable animals, but if you pay closer attention to the details of the film you can see that it contains a much higher level of depth. It targets many stereotypes like how everyone at the DMV is slow or that it"s only okay when other bunnies call eachother cute but it"s offensive when other animals say it. Some people believe that race is biological and that you are born into this specific category. However, that is not the case, race is purely cultural and has no biological standing at all. "Human groups frequently insert a false notion of biological difference into the cultural category of race to make it appear more factual and objective" (p.150).

Race is portrayed very unequally in this film. There are a lot of stereotypes and prejudices. For example, since the very beginning of the movie it is made known that foxes are untrustworthy and only scam or trick other animals. Foxes are said to be like this because it is "in their biology" and they can never change. Or another example could be that bunnies are supposed to be carrot farmers and never go into the city, so when Judy wanted to be a police officer her parents became worried for her to go into the city where there are foxes and other "scary" animals that they are not used to.

When Judy Hopps was little her school had put on a play about how predators and prey live along side by side in the city of Zootopia with no problems. At the end of the play, Gideon Gray, the neighborhood bully, who is also a fox, was picking on a couple of animals and took their tickets. Judy witnessed what was going on and tried to stop it, but it led to her own little quarrel with Gideon and he hit her which ended up scratching her face. Later into the movie when Judy is all grown up and is a police officer in Zootopia she sees this fox, Nick Wilde, enter an ice cream store with his son. Nick was doing nothing wrong at that time but when Judy saw him she reached for her fox repellant and proceeded to follow him inside the shop. When she saw that Nick was only trying to buy a jumbo pop for his son she put her repellant away and helped him out when the owner of the store was hassling him. Since Judy had this experience with a fox when she was younger and everyone saying that foxes are untrustworthy animals, she judged Nick even though it was clear to see that he was doing nothing wrong.

There are many stereotypes present in Zootopia. For example, in the movie there is a scene between a predator, which is played by a tiger, and prey, which is played by a bunny. In this scene the tiger sits next to the bunny and her son and decides to peacefully read a book. The mother bunny is scared of the tiger and decides to pull her son closer to her even though the tiger is just peacefully sitting there. The stereotype in the movie is like the Muslim stereotype that we have in real life. Unfortunately, since the events that happened on 9/11 Muslims are portrayed as terrorists, especially the ones that cover themselves with a hijab. Although Muslims have voiced that they do not believe or condone violence in any way shape or form, prejudices still take form from fear and ignorance.

In Zootopia Doug Ramses is a chemist that makes the night howler flowers that Dawn Bellweather uses to turn the predators into savages. The only characters that turned savage were the predators and this was done on purpose by Dawn Bellweather. She did this because she wanted people to see that predators and prey can not coexist peacefully and that predators are very dangerous. In real life people are racist against African Americans for example, that they are "scary" or that they are more likely to do drugs. Not only with African Americans but this prejudice also relates to people of Mexican origin. In todays politics for example, president Donald Trump wants to build a wall on the boarder separating Mexico and America. He claims that building a wall will keep out the illegal immigrants who also bring drugs into the country.

In the movie it is believed that the predators are biologically predisposed to be savages. In real life there are people that believe in that prejudice for example, African Americans and Muslims fall under that category. To a racist person African Americans are supposed to live in the ghettos and inner cities barely making enough to afford their apartment. Also, people are racist towards Muslim people in this same regards. Society has this prejudice against them that they are all terrorists and even if they are just standing their minding their own business people still look and stare.

In conclusion, the movie Zootopia attacks many prejudices but in a funny friendly kind of way. Most people don"t even realize the connection with race and prejudice when they watch it for the first time. Race is not something that can be measured by biological means. Humans have created this concept of race because we as a people just feel the need for everything and everyone to have a certain place and belong to certain thing. We have a need to label things and unfortunately that"s where this label of race came from. All people originated from Africa and are the same. Culture has made this concept of race this important because biologically everyone"s race is human.

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