Date of Award

Summer 2007

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Sociology & Criminal Justice


Applied Sociology

Committee Director

Elizabeth Monk-Turner

Committee Member

Brian K. Payne

Committee Member

Judi Caron-Sheppard

Call Number for Print

Special Collections LD4331.S62 G7 2007


This study will analyze the depiction of alcohol, tobacco, and other substances in G and PG-rated animated films from November 1, 2000 to December 31, 2005. These films will include those released in theaters and video in English, at least 60 minutes in length, and of the animated genre during this five-year window. There is evidence that due to recent societal pressures facing the Motion Picture Association of America and their rating guidelines, the presence of alcohol and tobacco in children's animated Grated films has lessened. These incidents of exposure have since moved up the rating totem pole to receive a PG-rating as previously mentioned thus the addition of PG-rated films in this report.

The potential impact on the lives of children who view these portrayals of alcohol and tobacco is the most significant issue facing such research. Animation is a powerful tool that pulls on the attention and imaginations of youth. This can be correlated with tobacco advertising geared towards children. Children as young as six years of age recognized Joe Camel as frequently as Mickey Mouse and could associate him positively with smoking cigarettes (Rich 2001). It is also important to keep in mind the fact that children under the age of 8 years are said to be developmentally incapable of making a clear distinction between fantasy and reality (Rich 2001). For this reason, it is inherent that a re-examination of the films thought to be the most suitable for our children, those with the Grating, occurs. I then delve further to analyze those PG films which are also commonly thought to be child appropriate films.