06 March 2009

The perniciousness of pink

We've been watching a bit of Charlie and Lola this week, the girl and I (blame it on the chicken pox). As merchandised-to-hell kids tv shows go, it's rather good (and in fact, the tv programmes work much better for me than the books, which although beautiful to look at don't seem to flow dialogue-wise).

What's really nice though, is having a heroine who isn't a princess, doesn't wear pink all the time, and certainly isn't obsessed with fairies. Lola seems pretty normal - she goes to school, she has an imaginary friend and a best friend, and likes wearing shiny red shoes, going to the park and watching tadpoles. Hallelujah.

I'm so fed up of the whole pink princess girly thing, and M's only three. God knows what'll happen when she's older - we were speculating the other night whether she'd turn into a goth at some point (as opposed to a Goth, which might be rather worrying) in sheer rebellion against the pinkness of it all.

I don't remember it being quite so nauseatingly pink when I was small (although I'm pretty sure I did have a pink stripy top and skirt at some point) - but now, if you go into any high street store it's wall to wall pink/lilac/purple for small girls, complete with fairy wands, sparkly shoes and princess tiaras. Nice some of the time, yes. But some choice (and also the idea that you can achieve more in your life than being a princess) would also be good.

Yearly anti-pink rant over. I'm off to bake a (not-pink) cake.


Semaphore said...


It's definitely more pink - even since I was a little girl eighteen years ago. I hate hate hate it, because it is revolting and gendered and only creating problems for the future. One little girl is allowed to like pink, six million little girls can like pink, but what of that one little girl who doesn't like pink when everyone else "does"? Or the poor grandparents/godparents trying to find a toy that isn't pink and princessy? I know of people who had to go to the "boys' section" of toy departments to find the unisex toys like puzzles.

rach said...

Sempahore: that's a brilliant picture - thanks for the link!

I've given up in toy departments too - thankfully M is into Playmobil in a big way, and there's not a whole lot of pink in most of that, as long as you avoid the set that includes the unicorns (eh?) and the magic castle. I don't understand how princesses came to be the ultimate dream (although I suspect that a certain Disney corporation may have had something to do with it). Bring back Hans Christian Andersen - his stories may have been fairy tales, but the originals had a dark side to them.