Mulan Thesis

The film, Mulan (1998), resists the dominant narrative that women are less capable than men. Additionally, it defies the dominant narrative of what a socially acceptable woman should be like. The film does so by showcasing Mulan, the protagonist, as a hero. In 01:17:00 – 1:18:27, Mulan receives honor from the Chinese Emperor as a gratitude for saving China. He gifts her a medal of honor, Shan Yu’s sword (the enemy Mulan defeated), and offers her a position in his council. This demonstrates that the Emperor admires Mulan and how she is viewed as a savior, which defies these dominant narratives by displaying how a woman does not need to be the one being saved. She not only does not need to be saved by the men surrounding her, she saves them instead.

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