Beauty and the Beast : Now that Beauty and the Beast is becoming popular again…

Now that Beauty and the Beast is becoming popular again…

Now that Beauty and the Beast is becoming popular again I want to draw attention to the annoying misinterpretation that started as an online joke. People have misdiagnosed Belle as having Stockholm Syndrome. At first it was said as a joke but people who don’t really understand the nature of Stockholm Syndrome latched onto it as a valid theory and it’s very annoying.

First, the idea that she has Stockholm Syndrome diminishes real cases of Stockholm Syndrome, which is a lot more psychologically damaging and potentially sinister than merely sympathizing with a captor. Real depictions of Stockholm Syndrome in Disney include Quasimodo and his relationship with Frollo and Rapunzel with Mother Gothel in Tangled. Another media representation of Stockholm Syndreom is with Cassandra and her enslavement by Methos in Highlander. Methos started off as an evil immortal who initially broke Cassadra’s will so that she was submissive and docile. When she snapped out of it she fled into the night. Centuries later after Methos had reformed he begged her forgiveness and personally told her that he had induced Stockholm Syndrome in her.

Acting as if Belle is a victim of Stockholm Syndrome not only diminishes a strong and well developed character but it degrades and dismisses the very serious affects of Stockholm Syndrome. Often with real cases of Stockholm Syndrome the victim becomes seemingly complacent in their captivity. Their will is so suppressed that they become intent on appeasing their captor. They become not only afraid to escape but also unwilling to escape because it’s not what their captor wants. The Beast would not have been able to release Belle if she had actual Stockholm Syndrome. In some severe cases the captive becomes so dependent on the captor that it becomes difficult for them to make even the simplest of choices without them. It takes years of therapy to work through it. It’s not something that should be taken lightly.

If three is any syndrome depicted in Beauty and the Beast it’s actually Lima Syndrome, the theoretical direct opposite of Stockholm Syndrome and it’s not necessarily a bad thing. It is a condition in which the captor sympathizes with his or her prisoner and ultimately releases them.

In the case of Beauty and the Beast you might as well call it “No longer a douche syndrome” and it manifests when The Beast frees Belle out of sympathy and love. However a more dangerous example of Lima Syndrome is what Dr. Harleen Quinzel (Harley Quinn) felt for The Joker, and ultimately lead to her helping him escape in the 1990s Batman animated series.

So please... Enough with the misinformation about Beauty and the Beast and Stockholm Syndrome. It distracts from the moral of a beautiful story and diminishes real cases of the syndrome.

It’s almost like when people think The Little Mermaid depicted a character giving up everything for a man, which requires ignoring that Ariel sang “Part of your world” (about how she wanted to be part of the human world) before she ever saw Eric. Eric just became the icing on the cake / the last straw.

Please don’t “reinterpret” classic works of literature by deliberately rewriting aspects of them or omitting content so suit your narrative. It does more harm than good and it’s not funny or edgy.

Re: Now that Beauty and the Beast is becoming popular again…

It's not even Lima syndrome either, because it's not like he's holding Belle hostage and threatening to hurt her to gain something from a third party.

Re: Now that Beauty and the Beast is becoming popular again…


It's not even Lima syndrome either, because it's not like he's holding Belle hostage and threatening to hurt her to gain something from a third party.


actually that's Stockholm Syndrome you describing Liam syndrome is like what the OP says.

Re: Now that Beauty and the Beast is becoming popular again…

Uhm no, Lima syndrome develops in the same situation, only within the captor instead of the captive. The Beast does not hold Belle captive threatening her life to gain something from a third party, so it's nog even a situation in which Lima syndrome could develop. He never saw her just as a mere pawn, he sympathized with her from the very beginning and wanted to develop feelings for her. Trust me, while I'm no expert, I've done a lot of research because people keep making these ridiculous claims.

Re: Now that Beauty and the Beast is becoming popular again…

Largely agree with your post (though, that being said, I'm not sure I'd call Quasimodo and Frollo a case of Stockholm Syndrome, mostly because Frollo didn't abduct Quasimodo, he legally took him in as penance. Personally, if they wanted him to be as evil as can be, they should have him killing Quasimodo anyways and then killing the priest while gloating that he'll finally go to hell. Rapunzel and Gothel most certainly qualifies as an accurate depiction of Stockholm Syndrome, though, especially when Gothel DOES kidnap Rapunzel.).

Belle definitely cannot qualify as a Stockhom Syndrome sufferer. Her interactions with the Beast in the first night don't even match up with Stockholm Syndrome, since those who suffer from them do not talk back or throw tantrums to their captors when not getting their way.

Re: Now that Beauty and the Beast is becoming popular again…


Rapunzel and Gothel most certainly qualifies as an accurate depiction of Stockholm Syndrome, though, especially when Gothel DOES kidnap Rapunzel


Uhm no, kidnapping a baby and raising them as your own is not Stockholm syndrome. There most certainly was abuse and manipulation, but it was definitely not Stockholm syndrome.

Re: Now that Beauty and the Beast is becoming popular again…

It's a daft idea. Belle gets to like the beast because he changes and becomes kinder and more humane, he show a new side to his personality.

But I don't think Rapunzel has Stockholm Syndrome either. She doesn't even know she is a prisoner when the film starts, and she doesn't have any trouble breaking out when she wants to.

Re: Now that Beauty and the Beast is becoming popular again…

Has the movie not been popular?

Re: Now that Beauty and the Beast is becoming popular again…

I hope this sjw trend dies soon
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