Lauca, my 7 year old daughter is really into Enid Blyton’s The Famous Five at the moment and has even started watching old episodes of it from the 1960’s series. The Famous Five is made up of two boys, two girls and a dog. I cannot help but be struck by one of the female characters, a tomboy called George.
The series is just so wonderfully at ease with George. Can you even pick her out of the kids in the 1960s series below?
The character, Georgina, is the one holding the dog leash and she’s a girl who insists upon being called ‘George’ and who cuts her hair short and never wears dresses. She is also delightfully fierce and adventurous. There’s nothing apologetic about her and she wasn’t forced to embrace comforting symbols of feminity for the audience either. Enid Blyton was a conservative woman and the first book of her series, Five on a Treasure Island was published back in 1942, but here she was writing about this kid who did her own thing with gender, like it was no big deal.
My god, in comparison we’ve become so rigid about gender binary with kids now.
Almost nothing is gender neutral any longer. It’s exhausting. It takes serious effort by parents to question the binary for children because we live in such a sexist culture and so, I present to you this father. Adorable.