To be honest I found this chapter to be a tedious read. Normally I don't condone looking so far into something as simple and innocent as animation. But after many of the examples and analysis of various famous character such as popey and Micky Mouse, I was successfully convinced that the issue of representation is something you can't escape whether or not you like it. Because the animation will always be interpreted through the eyes of whoever is watching it, and everyone, no matter what shape or color, watches cartoons. So animations will always try to make a connection with its most likely demographic. There could be a group of character that each sort of carve out a different demographic to get everyone covered. How bout Transformers 2? There were two new transformers introduced that talked in "slang". Obviously this is a represention of the modern perception of urban inner city culture. There was apart in this film that these two robots confessed that they couldn't read. Did the producers not realize how that could have been perceieved extremely negatively? Or did they do it on purpose?
Undoubtedly it is the responsibility of the artist or animator to always be conscious of these issues. And that is why many cartoons seem to have no gender and race at all, because it delicate territory to treed on indeed.