Has anyone else noticed that the notion of female empowerment is finally getting the spotlight we’ve all long been waiting for? And no, we’re not referring to Kim K’s self-proclaimed “empowering” topless selfies. “Thank you Kimmy, you have made me see the empowerment light,” joked Jaqueline Lunn of Mamamia. She explained, and we couldn’t agree more, that “Kim’s nude selfies are not about feminism. They are not about liberation or empowerment. They are about selling the Kardashians. They are about celebrating the “right” type of body – thin, flat stomachs, big boobs kind of like a blow up Barbie.”
On one hand, women with thin, flat stomachs and big boobs have every right to celebrate their bodies too, just like the rest. But on the other, Kim’s “beauty” is the result of hundreds of thousands of dollars and countless hours of procedures, treatments, stylists, and full-time photo-editing assistants – to become what the media wants in order to sell herself. We all know she wasn’t born with it, it’s definitely all Maybelline.
Speaking of Barbie, the dolls have had a brand image issues as of late due to the unrealistic body standards they proclaim, and as a result a large decline in sales. Well it seems they’ve finally decided to make some changes…
Have you seen the heartwarming and quite honestly, unexpected turn their campaign took last year? Take a look!
Wow, right? This brilliant advert, called ‘Imagine The Possibilities’, sends a touching message: “When a girl plays with Barbie, she imagines everything she can become.” Our favourite part is that the adults you see in the film are not actors, but real people with real reactions to these little girl’s determination to be professors, business women, or soccer coaches.
“What is brilliant about this highly entertaining film is that Mattel successfully reframes how we think about Barbie Dolls. The film positions the Barbie Doll as a conduit for the development of a child’s self image.” writes Will Burns of Forbes.
However Barbie’s breakthrough isn’t the only good news for girls today. A movement called I AM THAT GIRL started a few years ago and has been growing fast, reaching millions of people and sprouting 171 communities around the world. The movement aims to change today’s girl culture by “raising the standards for how girls treat themselves, how girls treat each other, and how the world treats girls”.
What’s so special about this movement is that it created many communities, dubbed “Chapters”, that connect girls with peers and mentors in their schools or cities, and encourage a safe space to connect and have open, face to face to discussions about friendship, mental illness, and other important things. These communities aim to be a support system for girls aged 14-22, helping them fight self-doubt, find self-love, lift each other up instead of breaking each other down, and hold each other accountable when they get stuck in the patterns of gossip, negative self-talk, and unhealthy behavior.
They even have a retreat that helps girls develop their leadership, emotional intelligence, personal growth, and professional skills.
Wow, where was this when we were teens??
With our xanax-addicted millennial generation being practically walking cucumbers with anxiety (we’re 90% water, get it?), the youngsters following in our footsteps are in no better position. Surely, any young girl today can benefit from these programs!
What do you think, are the young generations on the road to becoming more empowered, or are we drifting further into the loophole fueled by selfies and meaningless likes?
Let us know in the comments!