Archive for November, 2007
Traditionally, women are supposed to be as demure as possible in every setting. Society has made it clear that it would prefer a shrinking violet to a bold statement when it comes to the feminine half of the population.
Although men have always been applauded for being daring and even encouraged to push the proverbial envelope in order to explore the heights of human capabilities, when a woman shows even a tad bit of the same tenacity society frowns and tells her to settle down before she gets hurt.
There is no one in the world who can convince me that women are not as naturally daring as men. When I was a little girl, my younger brother and I loved to do stunts on our bicycles. We would build makeshift ramps from which we would jump several feet into the air. We would use those same bikes to race down flights of concrete stairs.
I never saw a swing set as merely a place to swing; I saw it as yet another vehicle by which I could discover a daring stunt to perform. The same was true for any playground that had equipment that would allow for climbing, jumping and hanging upside down like a circus performer…
Whether it is the older stories of Cinderella, Snow White and Beauty and the Beast or the newer tales of Aladdin with Jasmine and the Little Mermaid, every single one of these fairy tales end with the princess, or rather the damsel in distress, being saved by a handsome young prince.
What is a girl to conclude from these wonderfully woven bedtime stories but that as women we will only be happy when a prince comes to save us from horrible lives as single women and sweep us away to the land of happily ever afters.
Spinster. That is one of the names given to a woman who does not find a prince to save her. Old maid is another. Both of these words hold very negative connotations because society strongly impresses upon young girls that they must marry if they are to have a fulfilling life.
However, I recently stumbled across a new princess story that I plan to send to my college-aged daughter and to read to my 14-year-old daughter. I want to tell you the story in part since it is so wonderful. This fairy tale is about Princess Bubble who grows up, goes to college and gets a job that allows her to travel around the world…