Geology in Pop Culture: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
When I started preparing my talk for the 2023 annual Geological Society of America conference (Finding Hidden Geological Lessons in the Media Around Us), I knew that I wanted to talk about Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. It is a movie that had been on my radar to write about for many years and I figured it would be a fairly easy one to throw into the talk. However, when I started to do my regular research into it, fascinating things started to pop up and I figured as part of my talk, I would give the audience a walk through of my process. And that is what I will do here as well....
When we first are introduced to the eponymous dwarfs of the movie, we discover them as workers in a mine.
|The dwarfs working in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
And it turns out they have vocal talent as well, but that's besides the point. To start my research I needed to verify what it was that they were actually digging for. I assumed it was diamonds but I could not recall if it was ever stated as such.
|The True Story Behind Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs article from Curious Historian.
|Kimberlite model. Image courtesy of the Kansas Geological Survey.
|Blow up of European kimberlite deposits. From Tappe et al., 2018.
|Norlingen, Germany. Image courtesy of The Travel.
Known as the Nördlinger Ries impact crater, the asteroid that struck the Earth was going at least 70,000 km/h forming an impact crater 25 km across and 500 m deep. When meteorites strike the surface of the Earth, they do so with tremendous speed, creating very high pressures. The pressures produced from this impact were large enough that they could potentially create diamonds, if the rock they are impacting has the proper carbon concentration (carbon being the element that diamonds are made out of).
|The Nördlinger Ries impact crater. Image courtesy of Digital Geology.
|Article highlighting all of the diamonds from the Nordlingen impact. Image courtesy of The Travel.