How did they get so many Smurfs and only one Smurfette?
So asked academy award winner Geena Davis when she received the Hollywood Hero award from USA Today this month. She went on to say "Kids learn their value by seeing themselves reflected in the culture. If their reflection is visible and common they can say. "I must count, I see myself." But what messages are we sending children with so few female characters? Or when male relationships and female accomplishments are devalued?"
Geena has founded a group called See Jane. Its goals:
On average, half of all characters (both major and minor) in the most viewed media made for young children (under 11 years old) will be female.
Both female and male characters will display a range of attributes/qualities and will not be limited by traditional gender stereotypes.
Entertainment creators will make these goals integral to the projects they choose to produce.
Parents and educators will actively demand and selectively purchase media products that meet the first two goals.
I've always been impressed with Geena Davis the actress ("Thelma and Louise" and "A League of Their Own"now those are great movies) but now I am even more impressed with Geena Davis the woman.
Go Geena Go!