I can’t STAND the pop culture vs. geek culture meme going around, for a multitude of reasons.
So I made my own.
So, I have problems with this. Not that you can’t have real people as role models, that part’s legit. I’m 100% behind you encouraging your kids to look up to these fabulous women in this picture, and those who are not pictured.
But denying the role model viability of women like Zoe Washburne, Princess Leia, Kathryn Janeway, Susan Ivanova, Martha Jones, Dana Scully, Minerva McGonagall, Wonder Woman, Katara, and Samantha Carter simply because they are fictional is extremely problematic.
Choosing a role model (or suddenly discovering that someone has become your role model) is a personal expedition. You have your own list of qualities you admire and look up to. You have your own aspirations. You have your own idea of How To Be A Good Human Being that you want to impart upon your daughter.
And if you or your daughter finds those qualities in a starship captain or a superhero, there is no reason in the world why you should say “No, sweetie, this person is not real, don’t look up to them.”
Being fictional doesn’t make a character any less inspiring. Listen to interviews Amanda Tapping gave about women who would come up to her to talk about Sam. She lost count of how many told her that Sam inspired them to get over their fears of being The Only Girl In The Advanced Math Class, or that Sam inspired them to go into STEM careers. Amanda’s a role model in her own right, but it was Samantha Carter who inspired these women to do different things with their lives.
Each woman in this picture is a valid role model for her own reasons. I respect every single one of them.
But it’s too damn bad that their pictures had to be used to make a point that fictional characters aren’t legitimate role models. Especially when they’ve all, in their own way, contributed to fictional characters who are role models for young girls.
Reblogging for perfect commentary. You find your role models wherever you can.
These women are all great, but can’t we agree that awesome women are awesome and stop being so damn nitpicky about what can and can’t be considered an awesome woman? GEEZE.
This. All of this. My daughter is three. If she finds inspiration to be a writer from J.K. Rowling, I’ll be thrilled. If she finds inspiration to be an astrophysicist from Samantha Carter, I’ll be thrilled. If she simply finds inspiration to keep growing and changing and developing herself from Aeryn Sun, I’ll be thrilled.
Anyone who inspires positive growth and development in my daughter is someone I want her to be inspired by. They all have something to offer. Fictional, Nonfictional….I don’t care. If they inspire her to reach new heights and do everything I know she’s capable of…that’s what’s important.