This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

America Animated: Nationalist Ideology in Warner Brothers' Animaniacs




Rector, Megan

Type of Degree



Communication and Journalism


Television cartoons help to construct and maintain our perceptions of social reality. A depth hermeneutic approach for studying the Warner Brothers’ cartoon, Animaniacs, is described. Analysis of episodes featuring Yakko, Wakko and Dot as well as episodes featuring Pinky and the Brain were analyzed and compared with a historical analysis of the conditions in the United States in 1993. Analysis reveals nationalist messages in Animaniacs that position the United Sates as superior to other nations in the world. The show is found to not be a reflection of actual historical conditions of the time period when the show aired. The ideological implications of these messages are discussed.