We are obsessed with this brilliant commercial by toy company Goldie Blox, which aims to inspire and educate future female engineers. Their goal is to “disrupt the pink aisle,” as little girls are interested in lots of cool toys but primarily targeted with princess dresses and pop star dreams. The company’s creator, Debbie Sterling, is a Stanford engineering graduate disappointed with how few female classmates she had. Only 11 percent of engineers are female and Sterling believes that encouraging girls to be inventive at an early age with construction toys that come from “a female perspective” is a step in the right direction. The video takes the notoriously sexist “Girls” by the Beastie Boys and revamps it as something of a feminist anthem as the girls in the commercial get creative with household items — and those silly feather boas and tea sets they’re “supposed” to be sashaying around in. Anyone else want to adopt these three? [GoldieBlox]
Tag Archives: princesses
When Disney’s “Brave” came out last year, I was thrilled. So excited, in fact, that I went to see the movie at the El Capitan Theater in Los Angeles, complete with a pre-movie live show!
I am a not-so-closeted Disney fan. Though I’d never take my love this far, I did grow up a mere 25 minutes from Disneyland, had an annual pass all through college, and, at 25, toted around a (somewhat embarrassing) Disneyland laptop sleeve given to me by my best friend.
So how could this ginger of Scotch-Irish descent not be stoked to watch the animated story of a stubborn, Scottish, redheaded princess? I couldn’t resist! I hadn’t lacked for a ginger Disney Princess to pretend to be while growing up, but Merida felt so much more authentic than Ariel. She had wild frizzy hair (no dinglehopper could comb that mass), and fierce independence — she’ll fight for her own destiny, thank you very much.
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Merida, Disney Pixar’s first leading lady, was a popular costume for women this Halloween, according to Google. Between Merida, Kate Middleton, and the recent Snow White movies, we’ve had princesses on the brain this year. While our adult selves may cringe at princess culture and the outdated stereotypes that come along with it, there’s just something special about the Disney princesses we grew up with like Cinderella, Belle, Snow White, Aurora, and Ariel. And they aren’t all damsels in distress; the newer crop of the crowned ladies (including Princess Sofia the First and Brave’s Princess Merida) have attempted to be better role models for little girls.
But whether these Disney princesses — or, for the purists, animated heroines — are classics or newbies, they’ve inspired many creative artists who’ve transformed them into thought-provoking modern art. So while we wait for The Real Housewives of Disney to become an actual show, satiate your obsession with some of our favorite artistic renditions of Disney princesses! Read more…
I was never the little girl who dreamed of being a princess. While other kids dressed up in pink chiffon and glitter, I fashioned three-piece suits out of garbage bags and pretended to be a lawyer defending my Babar doll in a custody dispute. So when I got the chance to audition to be a Disney Princess at Disney Hong Kong, it wasn’t about channeling some childhood fantasy. I knew I would be faking it. Or so I thought. Keep reading »
If I read the phrase “You’ve got to kiss a lot of frogs before you find your prince” on this site one more motherspelunking time, I’m going to spontaneously barf. You don’t really believe this, do you? Dudes don’t have an equivalent to this creaky, cliché trope.
Men don’t want to date princesses. Maybe there are some who do, and the women who aspire to be princesses deserve the brutes. And for that matter, I sure as hell ain’t no prince, although I’d love to bring the cape back. These days, I’m just a messed up clown with a poet’s liver whispering sweet nothings to a pair of nickels in the hopes they’ll make babies so I can afford a new pair of over-sized shoes. Men do not want to be princes. Princes are born into success, men make their own. We want women who share that same ethic, however it is success is defined.
I would never claim to be a “feminist.” I have other underhanded ways to get laid than feigning allegiance to a vibrant if fractious movement that doesn’t need my feeble brain power. But when I hear perfectly intelligent and willful women console each other with fairy tale mantras that promise, with a lot of persistence, they will find a well-heeled prince to care for them, I become conspiratorial.
Maybe there really is a patriarchy, and I’ve just never been invited to their annual meet-up. It’s a testosterone-jacked cabal of dudes smoking cigars, and wearing penis hats, sitting around an oblong table in a secret silo on a peninsula plotting how to reinforce absurd, medieval wish fulfillment fantasies in women. I imagine the meeting’s minutes going something like this:
High Lord Phallus: “Next on the list: gender programming. How do we keep these modern day suffragettes from full romantic self-actualization?”
The Grand Dong: “Why don’t we fill popular cartoon movies with stories about princesses, and hope they want nothing more than to be the gilded property of a feudal dictator in pantaloons.”
Minister of Testicles: “Excellent idea. Anyone want a bratwurst?”
Let’s break down the princess myth, because so many of you have Princess Mania. Myths are lies that become truth, so it is wise to pick the best possible lies to believe in. And the lie that romance for a woman is a humiliating lottery, a game of Russian roulette where all men are slimy little amphibians, save for one, just pollutes the collective unconscious.
And if you fully dissect the frog love, really get all up in the guts of the source material behind the whole Kermit-smooching archetype, absurdity abounds. Here’s your precious fable in a nutshell:
“Once upon a time there was a princess whose sole claim to being special was having the genetic luck to have wiggled out from between the loins of a Queen. She is pampered, fawned over and entitled, treated like a cross between a Kobe heifer and a Christmas tree. There is no one around to date but royal douchebags who play grog pong all the time, and then one day she gets chatted up by a frog with a nice personality. She’s bored, and desperate, and it couldn’t be any worse than swapping spit with Sir Chinless, so she heads to first base with the amphibian. Then there’s a poof! And the frog is suddenly an inbred ponce with a crown and they live happily ever after, forever and ever, until the divorce. The end.”
In some translations of the Brothers Grimm story “The Frog Prince,” the princess lobs the frog against a wall in disgust before it turns into a prince. And in some even more obscure versions, she decapitates the thing before it magically transforms. Like most fairy tales, “The Frog Prince” is a mordant little morality tale that cautiously suggests a lady needn’t be so choosy when picking a suitor. Even the more sanitized, and Americanized, versions of “The Frog Prince” offer this moral: personality counts! Allow yourself to be charmed by a talking frog and you’ll be rewarded. But first, you should be happy with only a talking frog. In fact, you should be so lucky to kiss him.
However, this is lost on those who see dating as a lot of reptile tonsil hockey and finger-crossing, which, do not doubt, just sounds like a depressing labor. Love is an opportunity, not a prize. It should be pursued greedily, recklessly, with an adamant heart. Kiss men, and move on. Maybe one day you’ll kiss a guy and he’ll turn into a guy who’ll march through tornadoes to get you tampons, admit when he’s wrong, and eat ice cream naked in bed with you. The point is: give regular people you date the chance to be extraordinary without the maudlin fairy tale expectation. The favor will be returned.
Lastly, ladies: if you’re heartbroken, grow a pair of ladyballs. Buck up, listen to some Patsy Cline, and toss back nice stiff shot of bourbon. Then try out this Snapple cap bon mot: “Men. Can’t live with ‘em, good thing they’ll keep making more.”
There’s been quite a bit of controversy surrounding Disney’s “The Princess and the Frog,” which, for the first time in Disney’s 70-year history, stars a black princess. First her name was too stereotypically slave-like, so it was changed from Maddie to Tiana. Then the blogosphere was in an uproar because Princess Tiana has a racially-ambiguous love interest who has lighter skin.
Now a not-so new debate has come up about whether little girls should be indoctrinated into the princess culture in the first place. Blogger Monique Fields, who has daughters ages 2 and 4, at The Root questions the impact of princess values and ideals, preferring a healthy dose of reality for young women to counteract this fantasy.
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