I was a strident feminist as a child and I blame that on being a kid of the 1980s when Margaret Thatcher was in power (even though I’m not sure if she was a feminist herself!) and women’s rights was everywhere. I used to have actual fights with my mum about a woman’s right to work and how a woman shouldn’t feel pressured to stay at home with the kids. Of course now I have a child I choose to stay at home with my kid, but that wasn’t the point! It was the right to choose. I got that then and I still get it now.
So yeah I suppose I’m still kind of a feminist… I know I’m incredibly grateful to the female freedom fighters who came before me, that allowed me to be as relaxed as I am about it. I know there are women in the world doing great things and I think that has almost become ‘par for the course.’ Not the exception to the rule, just the rule. I also think that ‘greatness’ can encompass such things as ‘being a good mum’ or ‘being a contributing member of the community’ and that it doesn’t just have to mean ‘being Beyonce’ or ‘ruling the world’, it can mean so many things.
Would love to know your thoughts? Happy International Women’s Day!
You may well be thinking I am being ridiculous, trying to whittle down the vast array of heroines into one measly “top ten” list. And you would be right, it is ridiculous. But let’s have a go anyway… I’ve tried to be unpredictable here and there… (in no order of importance)
Jennifer Jones, Looking for JJ
This girl isn’t what you would call a conventional heroine. Basically she killed her friend when she was ten and we see her life six years later as she attempts to integrate back into society under a false identity. Needless to say things are not easy for Jennifer however I loved the way that even though she did this beyond horrible thing I still empathised with her. She actually seemed like quite a nice person.
2. Minny Jackson, The Help
This is my favorite character in The Help. Every time she is on the page it glows with humour, passion, bravery and rebellion. She tells everyone how things are and makes no apologies for that. I wish she could be my BFF.
3. Artemis, Greek Mythology
My favorite goddess by a country mile. She’s the best in all of mythology with a bow and arrow, she’s a full on virgin and only hangs out with other virgins, in woods, surrounded by deer. How cool is she? (P.S. there is no actual such thing a ‘full on virgin’).
4. Elizabeth Bennett, Pride and Prejudice
The predictability of this choice makes it no less worthy, I tell thee! Elizabeth is sparky in all the right places. That sounds a bit rude but what I mean is she gives as good as she gets and can play verbal tennis with the best of them – all done politely of course – and she can win. She’s also a bookworm and writes fabulous letters.
I love ladies that kick ass! I’m almost as intent on it as Quentin Tarantino and look what he’s come up with. It all started in the summer of 1993 when I was 12 years old living in a small town in Lancashire and hanging out on a constant basis with a great friend with blonde curls and a fantastic sense of the ridiculous. Together we would make up the silliest funniest characters such as rainbow coloured bickering carrots and we called ourselves ‘longheads’ due to the feeling that we both had foreheads that are too big.