Damsel in Distress- #AtoZChallenge


The vague thought that most young children grow up with is that women are weak and powerless. The influence children have while growing up is prone to shape their thoughts and opinions as adults.

Portraying women to be pretty, fragile damsels in various forms of print and media can determine the expectations of kids on women, irrespective of their gender. Living in fantasy at tender age can be fascinating, but it’s hard to digest the reality once old.

A fairy tale with a dreamy, happy ending is perfectly fine. But waiting for prince charming to help a damsel in distress is not realistic. The awwness generated from the perfect ending kiss is temporary. Young girls end up imagining Β these scenes until they are hit with harsh realities of life. Whereas young boys imagine rescuing and engaging in a life saving act of the perfectly figured, dreamy eyed damsel. This sprouts their impression of women being pretty, vulnerable ladies waiting for their perfect man.

Things are changing for good. Movies and tales with better themes are emerging. It’s Β nice to watch Disney come up with animations featuring female protagonists. They are no longer the damsels in distress, but the brave heroes fighting for survival. The male characters enhance their lives, rather than being the purpose of their very existence. Such movies portray grit and determination rather than focusing on gender roles.

It’s always satisfying to watch a struggling warrior emerge heroic rather than waiting ages for a kiss from a prince!

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18 thoughts on “Damsel in Distress- #AtoZChallenge

  1. I agree. Last night my daughter was telling me ( she is 4) what she does when she goes and plays in her imagination. I started to ask her questions. She pretended she was Cinderella. I kept asking questions and she went thought the story of what happens in the story. I was dreading the ending bit. II asked her so what happened in the end? Thinking she was going to say she and the prince lived happily ever after but she surprised me with Cinderella got to dance again . πŸ™‚ This made me so happy because she loves dancing . She does ballet and tap. πŸ™‚

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    1. That’s wonderful! I’m so glad she picked up the right aspect of the content. πŸ™‚ And it was very thoughtful of you to get curious and ask questions to ensure she wasn’t fantasizing. Hope she has great fun dancing! πŸ˜€ Thank you so much for reading and sharing your wonderful experience πŸ™‚

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  2. D?? Are you on D already?? I must have had a time slippage although book editing and you are responsible for Computer Say yes on the daily prompt 😁

    Such a good piece though and very on the mark with stereotypes and how films and takes have propagated the issue. I totally agree with you that it’s nice to see both gender protagonists with neither being portrayed as weak and feeble awaiting some mighty prince or rescue scene. Although most tales need weak and feeble bits but that has no need to be gender specific…not in this day and age.

    Although happy ever after is a cool idyll….in a nine gender specific way…I’d quite like that outcome myself 😊

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    1. Exactly! So nicely put! πŸ˜€ I’ve never really been a fan of stereotypes and they bother me. (for good, I hope) There are many issues that are generalized, especially gender roles. I’ve seen huge influence of these tales on people I know. It’s big time for change and I’m glad it’s occurring steadily. Thank you very much for such a thoughtful insight! πŸ™‚
      And your comment made me change my perspective from “It’s only D, lot more to go!” to “It’s D already! Yay!” :D. This is really a challenge, lol. It’s good to have a slippage once in a while πŸ˜‰ , it enhances your productivity on much important tasks (editing) πŸ˜€

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      1. Thank you 😊

        Thing is it sets up society with a subliminal blueprint. Role models and person A must be like this and person B must be like that. Politicians use a similar formula to get society to stop thinking and start following. I’m really keen on letting my antagonist win at the end of the book, walk away, brush my hands and think there that’s civilisation done with…no sequel necessary…just to embrace the none happy ending…although I’m told people need hope and readers like to see the pitfalls, hurt and angst before the days is saved…but what if it’s not saved…I wonder how that will go down….

        D for despair…oooh a thought…could I write a flash fiction piece for each letter??? That would be a challenge indeed πŸ€”

        Keep it up…you are doing really well…no pressure….what is it now? F already 😊

        I blink and miss two days at the moment !!

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      2. Yes, I cannot agree more! I like your thought of letting an antagonist win. But as you said, readers usually connect more with the protagonist and may be disappointed when they reach the end. See, this is the problem with stereotypes. In reality, not every story has a happy ending. So, may be you should experiment this scenario in your one of your next books! πŸ™‚
        You can definitely write flash fiction pieces for each letter. I’m sure it would not be as hard for you! Yeah, it’s F already and I’m struggling to take time out to write πŸ˜‚

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      3. I’ve part of a series where the antagonist kicks ass at the end of the first book. I’m toying with making sure it doesn’t get killed off as such in the final one too. Although I think readers probably want hope after a large struggle…feel good factor and all that. I might trial it in a short story though. How often does this challenge come up ?

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      4. That’s nice! Short story is good for experimenting may be. I think this challenge comes up once every year. I am a first timer, may be that’s the reason I’m finding it quite challenging πŸ™‚

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      5. New or not the demand on time could be equally arduous. I’m too random to write every day. I’m not sure my sanity could take it 😁 Might dip into the prompts one though and flip out some rambles to see what happens. I think you are doing brilliant so far though πŸ˜‡

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      6. Too right the more you get involved the more you have to do…this is a bit addictive πŸ€” No need to thank either…accolades where they are due so keep it up 😊

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