“A Whole New World” Soundscape Analysis

While in the actual film, Jasmine doesn’t get the spotlight like Aladdin does, “A Whole New World” allows Jasmine’s personality to shine through. She is one of the few Disney princesses who struggles against her bonds, following the example set by Belle in the Beauty and the Beast, who doesn’t idly yield to marriage as most previous Disney princesses had done.

At first Jasmine comes off as a spoiled brat, but little by little, through Aladdin, she sees a whole different side of life. This song really is a great portrayal of falling in love- because that’s what love is: A Whole New World. It’s unfamiliar territory and this captures that sensation. It also parallels Jasmine’s desire for freedom.

I personally really start identifying when Jasmine begins singing. I feel a strong bond to her (perhaps because of my Persian background), and because I know what it feels to be trapped in a gilded cage. Living at home as a twenty one year old is tough, but not as bad as living at home when you’re eighteen. When I was younger, I struggled against the rules and boundaries my parents set, just as Jasmine does, without realizing that these measures are for her own protection.

My feelings as with all Disney songs are nostalgia, and a slight sense of yearning. Despite the cynicism my generation holds, deep down, we all want to find that freedom and that love that the films portray.

Of course, to some extent, my hormones do go a bit crazy when listening and I giggle because of the sexual connotations that my friends and I implicated on the song when we were in our crazy “Twilight” phase ( I can show you my…. Sparkling shimmering wonder…) [hey we were in high school- give us a break].

However, despite the naughtiness, for me Jasmine is the princess I relate to second-most (Belle’s books over rule Jasmine’s hot blood). It’s hard fighting to have the right to love who you love, hard to prove to your parents that you can make the right choices. It the struggle of every teen, the struggle to go out and face the world.

Thoughts? Different perspectives? Awesome Jasmine-related memories? Comment below on what “A Whole New World” means for you!

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