Communication ETDs

Publication Date



This thesis explores the female gender role representations in imported cartoons across the years 1990 and 2010 and their resonance with the conservative Yemeni Muslim culture. The two selected cartoons are A Little Princess Sara (a Nippon Animation production) and Totally Spies (a Marathon Media production), both of which are imported to the Arab countries, dubbed into the Arabic language, aired on Arab childrens channels and popular among girls. The study is inspired by theories of media and cultural globalization and imperialism, which were developed to explain media policies and flow around the globe. The study also draws on the assumptions of social learning theory and cultivation theory that explain media's influences on viewers. Analysis ultimately revealed several differences in female gender representations that are depicted in these cartoons. Although the representations in neither of the two cartoons examined proved completely resonant with the conservative Yemeni Muslim culture, in A Little Princess Sara some of the representations are resonant with some aspects of the Yemeni culture. In contrast, in Totally Spies almost all of the representations are highly dissonant to the Yemeni culture. This study explicates a number of the potential implications of these imported female gender representations for conservative Yemeni culture and the factors that impact the potential influences of these representations.




Female gender role representation, media, childrenΓÇÖs cartoons, globalization, cultural imperialism, Yemeni culture.

Document Type


Degree Name


Level of Degree


Department Name

Department of Communication and Journalism

First Committee Member (Chair)

Rodriguez, Ilia

Second Committee Member

Gandert, Miguel

Project Sponsors

U.S Department of State AMIDEAST Washington Fulbright Program