Nov. 9th, 2009

Yesterday I remembered what prompted me to come up with this plot in the first place.

I was sick of all the stories about "feisty", "spirited" girls donning boy's clothes and running off to seek adventure, recover their family fortunes, escape from forced marriages and so on. I thought it would be interesting to write a novel featuring a boy who dresses up as a girl in order to recover his family fortunes.

On a tangent, "feisty" and "spirited" (as applied to female literary characters) are two of the ickiest words in the English language, in my opinion. They epitomise a view of the world which fetishises women struggling against oppression, usually hopelessly. They often seem to be coupled with an assumption that the vast (non-feisty) majority of womankind live up to all the worst misogynist stereotypes. And yet I often hear people claiming that a book or other work is non-sexist on account of one of the main female characters being "feisty". Yuck.

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Catriona Mackay

November 2012

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