What does the little mermaid want? : a comparative analysis of H. C. Andersen's "The Little Mermaid" and Walt Disney Studio's animated film "The Little Mermaid"



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The present thesis focuses on analysing and comparing the wants and wishes of Andersen’s nameless little mermaid from the tale The Little Mermaid and Ariel from Walt Disney Studio’s animated film The Little Mermaid. The aim of the present thesis is to find out the main themes of what the little mermaids wish for, what are the similarities and differences between those wishes and to give some plausible causes to those similarities and differences. The analysis is done by grouping and comparing the ideas and evidence provided by several academic sources. The present thesis contains five parts: introduction, three core chapters and conclusion. The introduction provides a generic insight into the background of the overall theme of The Little Mermaid, the original story and the animated film, brings out the main goal – finding out what both mermaids want, and summarizes the thesis statement – that the three main wishes of the mermaids are respectively human body/human world, prince (man)/marriage and (in case of the Little Mermaid of Andersen’s) immortal soul/eternal life. The first chapter of the thesis analyses and compares topics concerning the little mermaids’ wishes concerning gaining the human body and becoming a part of the human world. The second chapter compares and analyses the topic of Little Mermaid and Ariel and their relation towards the prince and marriage. The third chapter concentrates on Andersen’s Little Mermaid’s plight and motivations to gain immortal soul/eternal life. The thesis’ conclusion summarizes the main findings of the three core chapters.



tegelaskujud, muinasjutud, film, identiteet