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  • Marina Cavalcanti

THE POWER OF ANIMATION

Updated: Oct 14, 2020



Animation is often considered “kids’ stuff”, not only because it’s illustrated, but also because it’s frequently used with education. While both characteristics are true, animation is also much more than that. At its heart, animation is art form for all ages, unfettered by the laws of physics or even logic, and can expand not only how we escape, but also how we deal with very “grown-up” issues like diversity and representation in the media.

Being traditionally child-centric, animation is often a child’s first taste of media consumption and this brings with it a tremendous responsibility for the messages it delivers. Animation provides an opportunity to show audiences the range of colors and cultures that exist in the world. This is important especially for children from traditionally underrepresented groups because seeing themselves represented on screen helps them embrace their identities and recognize that they matter as much as anyone else.

Animation also gives us a visual language for expressing emotions in a distinctive, yet simple way that allows people of all ages to understand and appreciate even complicated feelings. The perception that animated shows and films are “removed from reality” helps break down the viewer’s guard, encouraging them to set their biases aside and engage stories that may offer different perspectives or challenging truths that would otherwise be ignored or resisted.

As simple as it may appear, animation carries a complexity and even a responsibility from inspiration to production to distribution to the public, and should be explored as much as possible both by its creators and its audience.

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