Girls Can Like Star Wars too
Recently I read an article about a little girl named Katie who is being bullied by her classmates for carrying a Star Wars water bottle, which is something I’m very familiar with. That may come as a surprise given the Yoda hat I’m wearing in my cover photo, but I hid my love of Star Wars for most of my child life; sure I had Star Wars toys (in fact, I still have them), but my friends didn’t know. All through Primary school to Secondary school, up until college. Only my family knew that I loved Star Wars. But why? Girls can like Star Wars too. Right?
I think the main reason was fear of ridicule. It took me many years to be OK in my own skin and to embrace my geeky side. But now I love going to comic con which has become one of my favourite hobbies. I wear Star Wars clothing out and about, celebrate Star Wars day, and even had a Star Wars theme for my 30th birthday party.
So it saddens me that there is still a misconception that Star Wars is only for boys. That there are “boys toys” and “girls toys”…If a girl wants to play with lightsabres or a train set then why shouldn’t she? And if a boy wants to play with dolls why can’t he?
I know some people think that the toys children play with can affect their sexuality, but I think that’s a narrow-minded viewpoint. A boy playing with dolls will have experience taking care of something. While a girl playing with a train set may go on to study science, technology, engineering or maths (STEM).
I did. In fact, my major in college was Information and Communication Technology (ICT).
While I was growing up I was into most things that many would say are “for boys”, like trains and dinosaurs – they’re not. If you like it, be proud! Be you and love the things you love. I’m a young adult female and I love Star Wars! It’s for everyone. Any age, any gender.
If you’re a parent, what would you do or say to your little boy if they wanted to play with dolls? Or if you’re little girl wanted a train set? I’d hope you’d tell them exactly the same thing. That it’s OK to love the things they love, and to be themselves.
It’s about gender equality.
My mum told me a story a while ago. I was at nursery and they called her into the office for buying me a toy garage with cars for my birthday. She said “So? That’s what she wants.”. Something I wish more parents would do for their children. And some do. Like the photo below of a dad and his daughter – she wanted to be Han Solo, so he became Princess Leia. This is how it should be – making children happy and giving them the confidence to be themselves.
— The Good Men Project (@GoodMenProject) October 21, 2014
Women in Star Wars
The Star Wars universe is full of strong male characters, but only a few strong female characters (at time of writing). The most noteworthy examples being Princess Leia and Padme Amidala. Both of these characters were far from the damsel in distress they appeared to be. They took charge, were sassy and also wore some of the most stunning and iconic outfits. Showing that women can be strong, independent and beautiful. Which they certainly can.
2020 update: The Star Wars universe has introduced more strong female characters over the years. But probably the most noticeable is Rey; she’s the ideal role model for any young female Star Wars fans. Rey is a good fighter, a great pilot and chose her own path despite her family background. She chose to be a Jedi, which is inspiring.
So, if I could say something to my younger self I’d tell her to be herself. Love Star Wars. Dress-up as Han or Luke or Leia, if you want too. Embrace your inner geek. And never believe anyone who tells you Star Wars isn’t for girls. Because it definitely isn’t.
Katie’s mum has asked for fellow females who love Star Wars to leave a comment on the article showing Katie she’s not alone, that lots of girls love Star Wars.
“I would love to be able to show Katie that she is not alone, that other females appreciate Star Wars. If there are any female Star Wars fans reading this, please feel free to show your support for Katie. I will let her read your messages or comments, and I think she will be surprised by what I suspect is a vast number of female fans.”
Please leave a comment for Katie or post one below that I’ll be sure to pass it on.
May the force be with you. 💖