Girls are metermaids

A friend’s facebook page reports he stumbled upon this classic of children’s literature.  Among other gems: Boys are cops.  Girls are metermaids. and: Boys build houses.  Girls keep houses.

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5 responses to “Girls are metermaids

  1. I could be wrong, but I think I saw this somewhere else recently and it’s a satire.

  2. Jenn Lena

    I tried to find it on snopes to no avail. Amazon has a listing for it as an out of print book (I’m glad I’m a boy. I’m glad I’m a girl.) But still…you might be right.

  3. Here’s an obituary of the cartoonist. Darrow worked for the New Yorker for much of his career. Despite this, though, now that I look at whole book via the link, I don’t think it’s a satire, while also not meant to be directly didactic in the manner of those “What you can be when you grow up” board games (cf the Heroes/Heroines panel). It looks more like it’s meant to sweet-natured, while of course also unconsciously very much a product of its time.

  4. Jenn Lena

    Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have something in your own Times obit like this line: “He was equally adept with lecherous septuagenarians and sexy women with low bodices.”

    On the blog at which I first saw the images/text, much was made in the comments of the “Boys are heroes. Girls are heroines.” panel.

    I find it so interesting when single examples are used to reinterpret whole sets of examples.

    …Oh, and those comments include some really horrifying “this is the way it is–boys and girls are biologically different and so should be socially different” claims. Shudder.

  5. On the blog at which I first saw the images/text, much was made in the comments of the “Boys are heroes. Girls are heroines.” panel.

    This is the one that makes it clear both that it’s not satire and that the guy’s intention is to be sweet about these great (natural, complementary, basic, ingrained) differences between boys and girls.

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