Are you worried that your daughter seems to be obsessed with Barbie dolls and Disney princesses? Do you let her play with any doll she wants, whenever she wants? OR, are you one of the moms who goes to great lengths to keep anything that even resembles a Barbie from her?
I know both types of moms. And, I can understand both sides. Personally, I did let my daughter play with many different types of dolls, and then....she grew out of them, on her own. I don't see any lasting effects in her case, and I think I know why.
You see, even though StrawberryGirl went through an obsession with Barbie, she never let herself be defined by her. She focused more on the interaction between the dolls than on the product itself.
My 4 year old niece is currently going through a Disney princess obsession. This post is for her, because I don't think she'll be defined by these dolls either.
On the surface, Cinderella is all about outer beauty and a negative stereotype of girls. But, if you dig deeper, you'll see that she's not really about those things. Not if you don't focus on them, anyway.
Did you know that there are over 1,000 versions of the Cinderella story? Why limit yourself to the Disney version, when you can learn so much about culture through picture books? If you read and compare them with your child, you'll see that this particular princess has a lot more to her than meets the eye. She's actually a cultural phenomenon!
I'll be writing another post or two with some of the many unique versions of Cinderella, but I'd like to get you started today with one of my favorites. This picture book will change the way you and your child think about this princess!
You'll find not one, but two very different Cinderellas, in the very clever picture book, Cinder Edna, by Ellen Jackson. You may find the traditional helpless female in Cinderella, but Cinder Edna is no damsel-in-distress!
I won't give away too much here, but I'll give you a hint of what to expect from this unique and modern take on the fairy tale. While Cinderella has a fairy godmother, a carriage, glass slippers, and a prince, Cinder Edna has a strong work ethic, a bus schedule, loafers, and a true love. It's about outer beauty vs. inner beauty, entitlement vs. financial (and even environmental) responsibility, and form vs. substance.
Is being a princess really all it's cracked up to be? This book will make you think twice about what it means to live "happily ever after." And, you'll have a few laughs, too...
I love this contemporary version of the classic story, and whether or not your daughter plays with dolls or not, I'm sure you will too! Enjoy...
For part 2, click here.