Unraveling Princess Jasmine’s Character and Its Correlation with Women Empowerment | from the 2019 Live-Action Aladdin

Time has passed, and a character has revised. This is what happened to the character Princess Jasmine in the new live-action version of the movie ‘Aladdin’. In the original movies, we know her as a princess who dislike to be isolated from the other world. Although she and her father argued quite a lot about it, it is undeniable that she care so much about him. But sadly, we didn’t get to see the full potential of this character in that movie.

That’s why when I watched the newest version of Aladdin, I was amused by the character development in Princess Jasmine. She was portrayed as a young independent princess, who are not afraid to speak up whenever something is not right in her opinion. She is full of knowledge and dreams of the future Agrabah, until she always wanted to be the next Sultan. All of her immense bravery, independence, and other values made me think that the character and movie could promote women empowerment. Therefore I believe all of us can learn something from her.

  • Assertiveness

There’s no need to argue that Jasmine does have ability in terms of communication and persuading people. If she doesn’t have this skill, probably when Hakim (the royal head of guard) was nearly tempted to be in Jafar side, the table would’ve not been turned and he will be in the bad side. In the movie, she does it by explaining how she would be so grateful if Hakim can be be thankful to the royal family for saving him when he was young. She told his story and made a powerful speech from it, which persuade Hakim to be loyal to Jasmine and her family.

  • Independence

I think this is a key component of Jasmine’s character. In my opinion, this value shows in the climax of the movie. For a long time she always asked her father to be the next Sultan, knowing that she will be able to  speak her voices and ideas if she is in that position. But at the end of the movie, when Jafar tries to tricked Hakim to go to his side, she realized that if it’s not her, there’s no one that could save Agrabah. She realized that she doesn’t need to be a sultan to defend her kingdom. As long as she got her ability to persuade people with all of the knowledge she has, it is enough for her to be able to save everyone.

  • Decision Making

I think we should be impressed by this part of her ability. There were many parts where she showed her quick decision making skill. And the one I want to highlight in this post is when she sacrificed herself to be married to Jafar. In this scene we could see how she deeply cares about her family and I’m sure she has thought this through in such a short amount of time. Even if at the end, she didn’t marry Jafar, this is something we should appreciate and remember. That it is important to always be quick in thinking about a decision thoroughly and also to prioritize people who we care so much.

How it Could Promotes Women Empowerment

Before I continue, I think it’s important for me to explain about what is women empowerment and how it started. Based on United Nations, women empowerment is: ‘The empowerment and autonomy of women and the improvement of their political, social, economic and health status’. Then about the ‘empowerment’ word, the New Oxford dictionary has stated that: ‘empowerment is giving someone the authority or power to do something; or making someone stronger and more confident, especially in controlling their life and claiming their rights.’ This movement started to spread widely in the 80s and 90s when women starts to speak up about the inequality and discrimination they have dealt with for the past decades.

By knowing these definitions and history, we need to understand that with women empowerment movement, it doesn’t mean that women should overpower men in every aspect of this world. It doesn’t mean that women feel superior of their kind until they want to take over everything. But actually with the women empowerment, they just want to be appreciated and heard. They just want to get their rights back so that they can have as many opportunities and experiences as men does.

Women empowerment has become a massive movement, especially in the 21st century we’re living in right now. However, we might not realize how in certain parts of the world, it is still a big problem. Some of the examples are: a research says that women got higher chance to be abused and raped, many countries are either legally ban women from doing several types of jobs or pay them less rather than men workers, girls under 18 years old are becoming a bride, and most of the victims still can not explain what they’ve been going through. Whether it is because they’re not allowed, because of their trauma, because they don’t have the courage to speak up, and etc.

Therefore, with the presence of a movie character like Jasmine, everyone who has seen the movie can learn and apply those abilities in their daily life. So that anyone is ready to speak up whenever something is not right. And even if the victims of the problems I mentioned before can not learn those abilities from this movie, we, as the people who may be luckier and are able to understand their condition, must encourage them to speak and demand their rights. Because I believe the problems women face right now is not something that only women should fight for. It is a humanity problem, something that could happen to anyone. So no matter who you are, we all should participate as much as we can to erase all of those discrimination. So that we can live in a world where everyone’s voice is heard and appreciated, and we reach the equality we’ve always wanted.

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