Today feminism is often perceived negatively because of the actions of a very small minority of people who attack men, and women who choose more traditional lifestyles. It’s important to remember that these people aren’t really feminists because feminism is about giving equal rights to all genders. Our most recent project in PLP reminded me of this and also why feminism is so important. Without feminism, we would still be living in a world where women couldn’t vote, get jobs or play sports the same way men could. That being said, there is still an ongoing battle that women are facing in today’s workplaces and sports fields for equality. One way we can work toward equality is by educating children and youth about women’s rights. In this project, we were tasked to do exactly that by creating a fun children’s book that also highlighted an aspect of the feminist movement.
Gabe, Ben, Kaden and I decided to work together to create our children’s book as we were all interested in writing about sports. As we began to write we also learned a lot about what changes have helped improve women’s sports. One of these major changes in the US was Title IX. This law was passed in 1972 as part of the Education Amendments. The law banned sexual discrimination in federally funded education programs, to increase opportunities for women in academics and sports. Before Title IX, female sports programs had almost no support from colleges, while less than 300,000 women played high school or college sports. 50 years later, over 3 million girls play high school sports alone, and female athletics has never been so popular. In Canada, Title IX affected Canadian colleges and universities as they were now competing with American schools to provide the same kind of funding for women. On top of this, Canada has a similar equivalent to Title IX in the Canadian Human rights model. This model ensures everyone receiving support from or working for the Canadian government is treated equally.
After some consideration, we decided to write our book about Chloe Primerano. Chloe was the first woman drafted to the Canadian WHL hockey league. This was a huge step for women all around Canada and Chloe is local to our school so it’s especially meaningful. We didn’t get a chance to interview Chloe to hear her story so our book is more inspired by her than about her. In the book, we talk about how Chloe had a dream to play high-level hockey, had to work hard, overcome negativity from others and finally succeed in joining the WHL. The book is accompanied by our drawings and rhymes inspired during our first visit to the kindergarten class.
To finish the project me and Gabe had to create an oral argument to answer the main question of our project, why is it so important to have strong women represented in media? Our simple answer to the question was
“Because young women around the world deserve to be inspired by women who push the limits of what’s possible.”
To elaborate I said
“An example is the queen’s gambit. In the past, chess media has only highlighted male players like Karpov and Kasparov, Gary fisher, etc. this tv show not only introduced chess to a larger audience but also showed women around the world that chess is for all genders.”
Gabe expanded further by saying
“Similarly in a primarily male-dominated sport, Christine Sinclair has become an inspiration to millions of girls and women around the world. She holds the all-time international goal record above Ronaldo and Messi who are the most famous people in the world.”
And to finish our argument we gave examples from our own lives that highlighted how we have been inspired by who we see in the media. This inspiration is what has helped both of us push ourselves. Girls and young women deserve to be inspired by the same kind of people.
In conclusion, this project gave me a much better understanding of the waves of feminism and their importance, the reasons that we need to have strong women represented in media and of course how to write books for kids. It was a very enjoyable project and one where, despite my subpar drawing skills, I still created a final product that I’m proud of.