Episode #25: The Draft, Doctrine, and The Duck (Season 2, Episode 5)
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When I was a kid growing up in the 1980s, one of my favorite things to do was watch old Mickey Mouse cartoons-- I loved seeing Mickey interact with Pluto and Goofy, and could probably have watched hours of these cartoons, if you let me. But one character especially stood out for me, and quickly became my favorite-- I loved the scrappy and grumpy Donald Duck. I still do. And while some of my best-loved episodes revolved around Donald’s skirmishes with Chip and Dale, or around the exploits of his nephews, Huey, Dewey and Louie, I still remember seeing numerous cartoons featuring Donald as a soldier during World War Two. Looking back on my childhood, it seems funny and bizarre to me now that I was exposed to American World War Two propaganda. But it’s true-- and it happened with somewhat regularity for someone like me, who had consistent access to the Disney Channel. Of course, as a child, I didn’t really think much of it- it just seemed like yet another Donald Duck cartoon to me. But now, I look back and find myself really curious. How did the Walt Disney and his team, especially a blustery cartoon duck, get involved so specifically in wartime propaganda?
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Music Credits: "Back to the Grindstone" by Dee Yan-Kee is licensed under BY-NC-SA 4.0; "Jessie Cave Duo (ID 479)" by Lobo Loco is licensed under BY-NC-NC 4.0; "Assembly line work" by Dee Yan-Kee is licensed under BY-NC-SA 4.0; "King of the air march" by Charles Daab is licensed under BY-NC 3.0 US; "Silent Park Inside Your Soul" by Alex Mason & The Minor Emotion is licensed under BY-NC 4.0; "Bindweed (Instrumental Version)" by Axletree is licensed under BY 4.0
Want more art-historical goodness? Check out the links below:
Time Magazine: How WWII Changed Walt Disney
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