In this week’s Samoa Observer column, I get to rave a little about feminism stuff in Samoa…
I have a five year old called Bella. The very last child that will ever alien-grow in my uterus, she is the supreme ruler of our universe – and woe be it unto any creature who does not understand that SHE should be the ruler of THEIR universe as well. (In other words, Bella is spoilt rotten. Yes I’m owning it. But let’s all agree it’s her father’s fault.)
Bella has announced that when she grows up, she’s going to “be a Princess, own an ice-cream shop, weld big buildings with my Dada and study bugs like the scientists on the Discovery Channel.” She also plans to “find a nice boy to marry, not a yucky one, and he will have the boy babies and I will have the girl babies.”
I like that my daughter believes with fierce intensity, that she can be anything and all things. Do any and all things. (Some of those things might have to be revised once she has a better understanding of biology… )
But it’s my hope she never lets go of that belief, my prayer that the world with all its soul-crushing weight of gendered roles and expectations doesn’t succeed in driving that fiery optimism out of her. Raising girls who are strong, confident, assertive – and happy to be so – is a challenge in any culture. Is it more so in Samoa?
Read the rest over at the Observer: Samoa – A Sexist Culture?