3/27/12

On the need for better role models.

I'm keeping this fairly brief and then stepping off my soapbox, but I think there's something worth saying, especially in the aftermath of Hunger Games madness.

Recently, I've been preoccupied with the media's lack of strong, positive role models for young women. Rachel and Darcy of Something Borrowed? Destroying a lifetime friendship for the sake of a boring, noncommittal guy. Jamie of Friends with Benefits? Misguided and seeking intimacy without truth. Emma of No Strings Attached? More of the same.  Annie of Bridesmaids? Insecure, unfulfilled and an overall mess. Bella Swan of Twilight? I mean, really.

I'm tired of female role models without their own opinions. I'm tired of apathy. I'm tired of women who are bored of their lives and won't do anything to independently change their circumstances. I'm tired of women who need men to complete them. I'm tired of women who speak in short, breathy sentences, falling apart when their male counterpart runs off into the forest to do his vampire business. Yes, all (err, some) of these are real things that women deal with, and should be translated into cinema. But, for real - can we see these flaws against a balance of courage and self-sufficiency? No woman is so one-dimensional that she can be categorized as strictly "flawed" or "flawless". I want to see more real women who are dealing with both strength and weakness in a positive way.

It's 2012. Women have more opportunities than ever before, but if we don't empower adolescent girls to take chances, make plans and overcome the tough stuff, then Emmeline Pankhurst is going to roll over in her grave.

So if I say nothing else about The Hunger Games (and please, let that be the case), allow me to say this: I'm encouraged to see a young woman depicted as strong, capable, intelligent and captivating, yet still clearly flawed and dealing with these flaws in a real way. Even if her name is ridiculous.

11 comments:

  1. AMEN! I agree with everything you wrote. Us women have come a long ways and it bothers me the way some movies and media in general (magazines and reality stars) portray us as boyfriend hungry and dependent on others. One of the movies I DO want to see is The Iron Woman. I think that one would be outstanding and show a great role model girls can look up to.

    But in today's world with so much in the media, it's sad to see young girls idolize characters like Bella Swan ... The girl who whines about wanting to die through most of the series to be with a man instead of stand up for herself and be independent. The same goes for some of the reality stars...we do need better role models in this world!

    I love the Hunger Games. If you want another fantastic book, you should read Divergent. It's amazing!

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  2. Thanks for sharing this! I completely agree. So glad I stumbled upon your blog. Xo

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  3. Here here! I completely agree. I just read a book called How to be a Hepburn in Hilton world and it was all about this same idea. I blogged my favorite quotes here: http://tiffanyd22.blogspot.com/2012/03/friday-book-club-march-books.html

    One of them said, "Great women of history don't put their lives on the line just so that we could dance on tables and text boys all night long, so let's do them proud and start standing up, speaking out, and using our voices for good."


    It's so true!

    ~Tiffany
    http://tiffanyd22.blogspot.com

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  4. I agree! The lack of positive role models especially for females is something we struggle with in Fiji. Given it's such a small place I think young girls really do need women to look up to and learn from. I guess it's an issue generally. Well written Stevie!

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  5. Wow, AMEN sister!!! Just stumbled upon your blog and I am so THANKFUL I did!! What a refreshing joy to hear other women who share similar hearts!!

    So awesome. And I truly look forward to reading more posts in the future!

    :)

    XO
    Erin

    sweetnessitself.blogspot.com

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  6. Thanks so much for leaving a comment on Veggie Table mostly because it lead me to YOUR blog! I'm slightly obsessed with NYC and can't wait to read more! Just looked through some of your New York posts and loving all your pictures!

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  7. What a perfect day for me to stumble on to your blog. :) well said!!

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  8. I couldn't agree more! Feel free to jump on your soapbox anytime! I'll listen! Hehe!

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  9. how about this chicky: http://www.imdb.com/character/ch0003336/

    Computers can be sexy ;)

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