Disney’s Shocking Past: Job Application Rejection Cites Gender Bias in Creative Roles

Disney rejected woman job application
Images Credit: Disney

In a letter that is going viral online, we learn the shocking reason that Disney once rejected a woman’s job application.

The world has changed quite rapidly over the last 100 years. Technology has progressed in ways many might have never thought possible, and developments like AI have become some of the most integral parts of our everyday (be it through recommendation algorithms or ever language model programs).

However, it’s not just material differences that one notes. Society has also changed notably over the last century, and a recent viral rejection letter from Disney sheds light on this.

Walt Disney and his children

Walt Disney and his children / Credit: Walt Disney Family Museum

Disney Rejected a Woman’s Job Application in 1938 for Shocking Reasons

As reported by The Indian Express, in 1938, Disney once rejected a young woman’s job application, citing the reason that “Women do not do any of the creative work in connection with preparing the cartoons for the screen, as that work is performed entirely by young men. For this reason, girls are not considered for the training school.”

In addition, the letter also specified that “The only work open to women consists of tracing the characters on clear celluloid sheets with India ink and filling in the tracings on the reverse side with paint according to directions.”

Job rejection letter sent by Disney to a woman in 1938
byu/Deepakhn inDamnthatsinteresting

The letter from Walt Disney Productions inspired many humorous responses, considering how ludicrous it seems in 2024.

One user wrote, in contemporary terms, what the letter meant to communicate, “We already have a diversity hire.”

Another tacked on, “the position of ‘woman’ has been filled.”

"Partners" statue, Cinderella Castle, Disney's Magic Kingdom Park, Walt Disney World Resort

“Partners” statue in front of Cinderella Castle, Disney’s Magic Kingdom Park, Walt Disney World Resort / Credit: Disney

Of course, times have changed since 1938, and women have since become an integral part of the Walt Disney Company (just think of Dana Walden and former CFO Christine McCarthy, current and former chief diversity officers Tinisha Agramonte and Latondra Newton).

But it’s worth noting that some women still feel the Walt Disney Company has a way to go, considering 9000 of them have come together to sue the Mouse House for unfair payment practices.

This post Disney’s Shocking Past: Job Application Rejection Cites Gender Bias in Creative Roles appeared first on Disney Fanatic.

About Priyanka Kumar

Priyanka is a writer, artist, avid reader, and travel enthusiast based in Chicago. In her free time, she is probably walking by the lake, catching up on the latest releases on TV, or spending inordinate amounts of time rewatching Moana, Encanto, and her Disney Channel life-long favorites Zack and Cody wreak havoc on the Tipton.

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