Wolves have not been treated kindly in movies. Movies usually depict wolves as a dangerous foe to be defeated. Even family oriented films are not immune to the classic big-bad world stereotype.
I have always been bothered by the dangerous wolf stereotype, and for this reason, I am reluctant to see Frozen, after seeing the wolf chase in the trailer. Wolves, in reality, pose little threat to humans.
Wolves are naturally shy creatures who prefer to avoid humans. Despite this fact, wolf stereotypes still abound in movies and some books. While there is no room for stereotypes in entertainment, children will enviably encounter them during their life. A movie like Frozen can be used as an opportunity to discuss stereotypes with children, allowing them to recognize stereotypes when they encounter them. Visiting the non-fiction section at the library, and checking out educational websites are great way to learn more about wolves. Last month, I had written a list of recommended children’s books on wolves, which can be found here.
Stereotypes unfortunately, don’t stop with animals. Stereotypes regarding groups of people exist even more frequently. Discussing stereotypes will foster kindness and acceptance, creating a friendlier world.