The (Lion) King and I

Describe a book, movie, song, or other work of art that has been significant to you since you were young and how its meaning has changed for you as you have grown.

When I was younger, lions were my favorite animal (that coveted title, for anyone interested, is now occupied by the raccoon). I dressed up as a lion for four Halloweens in a row, I had perfected a roar which I believed to be intimidating, and my naturally curly hair often reached the level of unkemptness where it resembled a mane. In retrospect, I believed I was a lion. So for me, The Lion King was less of a movie with a message than it was a documentary. And a devotion. It was my favorite movie when I was little and I had to rewind the VHS tape to the very beginning in order to watch it, and it is my favorite movie even now, when I can watch it (from the beginning) at the press of a button.

As I’ve grown, I’ve come to understand the message that is conveyed by the animated animals I love. In the movie, Simba is urged to “remember who he is” and to go back to the Pride Lands to reclaim the throne. He has to stay true to who he really is, and he is faced with the realization that no amount of pretending or running can change that. This message has influenced me for close to my entire life, even though I was unaware of it for so long. I have always tried, from as early as I can remember, to be my authentic self. I have, of...

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