The Shoe of Society

The Divine Miss M and her dear friend, the Non-Conformist*, made this Shoe of Society collage this weekend.

The product of intelligent and independent Seventh Graders.

The product of intelligent and independent 7th grade girls.

In their words, the left side represents societal views of women, dominated by pink. The right side represents more independent thinking, accomplishments, “some pink but less pink” (I personally loved the Title Nine inclusion).  The ballerina in the center is dancing her way over to the right side, while breaking out of the final Shoe of Society clamped firmly on her foot.

They declared that from now on whenever they see aspects of society that try to pigeonhole women or hold them back, they’ll recognize that as a “Shoe of Society.”

Wow … that’s so much more than I was doing at 7th grade sleepovers.

I would LOVE to take full credit for Miss M’s feministic views and no doubt we encourage independent thinking, individuality, choices and the idea that there isn’t anything she can’t accomplish.  But in reality, the biggest seed for this aspect of her personality was unwittingly planted by the world, not us.

When she was in First Grade, I was reading The Magic Tree House series to her. The books feature two children who go back in time to historical places and events. In one particular book, they went to Greece during the first Olympics. While there, they met a girl about their age who was being educated in secret.  M asked why it would need to be in secret and I explained that during that time period and in some places today, girls were/are not allowed to receive an education.  Her sweet little face looked at me so quickly and she snapped, with incredulity, “What?!”  To a child who had never known anything but a family that placed priority on school and learning, this was utterly foreign but even I hadn’t anticipated the depth of her reaction.  From that moment forward, without any prodding from us, she was extremely cognizant of any distinctions made by people, books, society in general between boys and girls, men and women.  It was actually quite fascinating and as you can see from above, still is.

*Moniker chosen by her personally. 😉

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One Response to The Shoe of Society

  1. The Cellist says:

    This is freakin’ brilliant, M and TN! I am so impressed and only hope my daughter is halfway as cool as you someday.

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