By VCUarts staff
VCUarts Dean Carmenita Higginbotham, Ph.D., is featured in a new documentary on the history of one of the world’s most cherished and iconic cartoon characters, Mickey Mouse. In the documentary, Mickey: The Story of a Mouse – which is currently streaming on Disney+ – Dean Higginbotham offers her insights as a scholar to help deepen the audience’s understanding of Mickey Mouse’s evolution and cultural significance throughout history.
Dr. Higginbotham’s research examines 20th-century American art and how urban culture impacts representation. She has lectured extensively on American art, popular visual culture and film.
One of the world’s most beloved icons, Mickey Mouse is recognized as a symbol of joy and childhood innocence in virtually every corner of the globe. Dreamed up at a low point in Walt Disney’s burgeoning career, Mickey became an overnight sensation when he starred in the first synch-sound animated short, Steamboat Willie. Through the decades that followed, the character evolved into strikingly different versions of himself that reflect both his creator’s remarkable career and dramatic societal shifts in the nation he came to represent. In the fascinating documentary Mickey: The Story of a Mouse, director Jeff Malmberg and Oscar®-winning producer Morgan Neville (who previously teamed up together for Won’t You Be My Neighbor?) examine the cultural significance of the nearly 100-year-old cartoon mouse.