Walt Disney – Michelle Pooran

Kathy Merlock Jackson’s Walt Disney: Bio-Bibliography discusses how Walt Disney essentially changed our lives. She explores his impact on American mass media and culture. In this bio-bibliography, Kathy explains how he did this using books, animation, live-actions film, documentary film, television, comic books, magazines, sheet music and recordings, theme parks, business, and ultimately the over-all view of Disney. Overall, this book consists of a biography of Walt Disney’s life, a discussion of his impact on the American media and society and offers insights into Disney’s thoughts based on his speeches and interviews. It also includes a Disney chronological biography for people to receive information on all his work and scholarships. The author of this book, Kathy Merlock Jackson, wrote this book because as she says “ When I was born in 1995, it was into a Disney world.” She grew up in this world that was all about Disney, and she felt the need to truly explore how Disney became such a big part of her life. Its purpose, was to give people information on who Walt Disney truly was.

The most significant part of this bio-bibliography was when Kathy analyzed the impact that Disney had on American mass media and popular culture. She began by explaining that even though Disney was known for pioneering the animated film and theme park, those were just two of the many things that Disney had an impact on. Many of the art form innovations were introduced and developed by and from the story of Walt Disney and the Disney studios. Some examples of these art forms are animation, sound, story board construction, synchronized movement, Technicolor and 3D. Disney being the first to attempt to master sound technology, influenced other animation studios such as Fleischer and Van Beuren. This was a huge innovation that Disney began to start a trend for experimenting and inventing. Kathy then began to describe how the inventions of Mickey Mouse as “an international success practically overnight because, in his early films, he relied on sight gags for the majority of his laughs. Whether people were watching in Hong Kong, Paris or Cairo, they did not need to follow any dialogue. They could simply laugh at what was happening on screen”. This allowed people to truly recognize the worthiness of all of Disney’s productions and encouraged people to begin to think more creatively. I believe Kathy Merlock Jackson’s depiction and description of Walt Disney really helps the reader distinguish Walt Disney from every other innovator.

What struck me as no te-worthy was definitely the list of all his successions and how Kathy added all the important events in Walt Disney’s life chronologically at the end of the book. I believe that this was an effective way to show the reader the events that took place in Disney’s life that really impacted his life and his career. This bio-bibliography enhanced by understanding of the issues that Disney had to face in order to get where he wanted to be. Personally, I found it inspiring to see how hard he worked to achieve his goals. After reading this book, it showed me how important it is to be creative, and that having this quality will truly help you pursue your dreams. The reason I realized this was due to Kathy’s ability to display his life in a way that helps readers understand how important it is to work hard and be an innovator.


1. Jackson, Kathy M. Walt Disney: A Bio-bibliography. Westport, Conn. U.a.: Greenwood, 1993. Print.

2. Stone, Kay. “Things Walt Disney Never Told Us.” The Journal of American Folklore 88.347, Women and Folklore (1975): 42-50. American Folklore Society. University of Illinois Press. Web. 05 Apr. 2015. – http://www-rohan.sdsu.edu/~amtower/KayStone.pdf

3. “American National Biography Online: Disney, Walt.” American National Biography Online: Disney, Walt. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 Apr. 2015. – http://www.anb.org/articles/18/18-00309.html



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