My latest guest post is up over at Shaping Youth. This one is about Miss Representation, young children (mostly mine), and The Paley Center screening I attended, along with Shaping Youth's commentary on Miss Representation's latest efforts in conjunction with the Superbowl. Here's a preview of my piece:
Gender is the latest hot topic around here.
For almost a year, my preschool aged son has said on occasion, “boys are girls and girls are boys.”
He has told this to friends in class, often girls, who have gone home and told their mothers, thinking he has told them a funny joke.
He also thinks that “kids” means “boys” but not “girls.” He has asked me to explain this to him but I’m not sure he quite gets it yet. Only very recently have questions about different pieces and parts on girls and boys come in to play. He also recently asked me if he could “milk a baby” when he grows up. I’ve hesitated to say too much because the innocence of not knowing the difference between genders is one I’d like him to hold on to for a while. While I don’t want him to be ignorant, I also don’t want his rapidly firing synapses to process anything through a gender lens before it absolutely must.