Of the many wonderful things that came out of the Women’s Marches this weekend, I was particularly heartened by the appearance of Princess Leia and Carrie Fisher on a number of signs that people took with them. We’re nearly a month on from her untimely passing, and it’s inspiring to see that for women across the world, Fisher remains a source of empowerment and hope. To paraphrase a famous Star Wars quote, the world struck her down, but she became more powerful than anyone could possibly imagine.
Seeing these signs reminded me of the power of fantasy and fairy tales. Star Wars is arguably the defining fairy tales of the 20th Century, and I hope the 21st Century gets one just as popular. Perhaps it’ll be Harry Potter, which I appreciate began in the 90s, but continues to be a significant force today – as evidenced by the many signs referencing that series at the Marches. Perhaps it’ll be something else, as yet unwritten, but fermenting in the brain of a child who witnessed the marches, either in person or on television, and now feels inspired to express themselves.
One day, I’m going to write more in-depth thoughts about fairy tales. They’re critical to our very being as humans, a way to engage with difficult and abstract concepts in a engaging and entertaining way. Sadly, however, I don’t have time at the moment, and am actually trying to formulate my own mini fairy tale, which I’m working up the courage to complete and post here. I’ll keep you up to date on that one.
So instead of a full blog, I’ll simply leave you one of my favourite images from yesterday and a quote, from fairy tale scholar Jack Zipes:
“Fairy tales since the beginning of recorded time, and perhaps earlier, have been “a means to conquer the terrors of mankind through metaphor.”
Mankind has created a horrifying terror. Princess Leia will help conquer it.