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Publications in American Studies from German Speaking Countries, 2005

By Karsten Fitz and Ingrid Gessner
Amerikastudien / American Studies

P. L. Travers, Walt Disney, and the Making of Mary Poppins

By M. Thomas Inge
Moravian Journal of Literature and Film

When Walt Disney decided to adapt Mary Poppins for the screen in 1944, he began a fifteen-year process of negotiation with the author, P. L. Travers, that would result in generous terms that would make her wealthy for the rest of her life. However, she also complained about the film for decades after because she thought he had radically altered her creation. Most Travers fans and critics would argue the same, with none of them specifying exactly what the damaging changes were. An examination of the film and an analysis of Disney’s Mary Poppins suggest that the British nanny is as mysterious a character as in the original and perhaps is even more subversive than critics have noted. Mary Poppins may arguably be not only a great Disney film but a fine motion picture that will continue to speak to generations.

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This website provides scholars with a one-stop shop for the latest research published in American studies journals throughout the world. Organized by the International Initiative of the American Studies Association and funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, this site is the outcome of a collaboration between numerous journal editors around the world.