Thursday, October 20, 2011

"That Girl" Syndrome

A reoccurring theme in my life and on this blog is the way women discuss, label, and I would argue devalue each other. I recently considered how often I hear and partake in this conversation:

Girl 1: Oh, "That girl" she sleeps around with lots of guys.
Girl 2: I would never do that. I'm not "that girl."

The phrase "That girl" is overused in normal conversations, and those labels stay with women. It is times like these when I get fed up with being on such a small campus where identities and social groups are solidified after the first year. Why is there such an obsession with putting people in categories? I'm a dynamic person and my interests have changed since high school, yet sometimes I feel like I live in a box at Denison. 

Is it a matter of just not caring about the labels others place on you? I wish I could do this, but I find that some labels just get to me. Also, labels about women are frequently negative. Why don't we have more positive discussions about women? 

One of my favorite quotes is: "Each second we live is a new and unique moment of the universe, a moment that will never be again. And what do we teach our children? We teach them that two and two make four, and that Paris is the capital of France. When will we also teach them what they are? We should say to each of them: Do you know what you are? You are a marvel. You are unique."
-Pablo Casals

Why don't we say "That girl. She's a marvel. She's unique"!

This post reminds me of the song "I'm Not That Girl" in Wicked

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