Disability representation in media and storytelling is often negative or inaccurate, with disability narratives equating disability to evil or lesser than abled bodies. The harmful representation is especially prevalent and dangerous in children’s media as the depiction of characters with disabilities may be children’s first introduction to disability, and thus the portrayal is likely to stay with them, especially as stories for adults continue to perpetuate the inaccurate representation of disabilities. “Emmie and the Enchanted Orchid”: Portraying Positive Disability Representation in Children’s Media seeks to examine the harmful portrayal of disabilities in children’s media while also recognizing how disability can be represented positively and accurately. In addition to the research, the project provides an example of a children’s story that positively represents disability with an original stage play titled Emmie and the Enchanted Orchid. The purpose of the play is not to tell the disabled experience but to provide a whimsical and entertaining story that shows the intended audience—primarily children—a positive example of disability representation while also teaching them about disability.
Advisor(s) or Committee Chair
Jessica Folk, M.F.A.
Creative Writing | English Language and Literature | Playwriting | Theatre and Performance Studies
Waters, Adrianna, "Emmie and the Enchanted Orchid: Portraying Positive Disability Representation in Children's Media" (2021). Mahurin Honors College Capstone Experience/Thesis Projects. Paper 898.