Little Miss-Ogynist: Why it's about time someone called out the the Mr Men series' sexism
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Although they are read by thousands of children every year, the Mr Men and Little Miss books have recently attracted criticism for being sexist. At a time when most talk of gender equality rightly tends to focus on the most shocking, pressing issues facing women around the world it can seem pedantic, stupid even, to focus on comparably menial issues. However, recently talk has turned to gender representation in the popular series, and how damaging the magic marker cartoons can really be. According to recent research by the University of Lincoln, the answer is pretty damaging indeed. The research has suggested that the childhood companions of millions of kids are actually sexist, finding that whereas 32.6% of Mr Men had to be rescued by another character in their story, a huge 51.5% of Little Misses were apparently unable to look after themselves. They female characters are also less able to speak for themselves, saying an average of 12 fewer words per book than the Mr Men, which, considering how tiny those books are, is quite a noticeable amount. Although they may be fictional, the frustrations of these Little Misses will hit pretty close to home for many women who've have to prove their strength and fight to be heard on a daily basis all over the world. And let’s not forget the blatant sexism in the names of Misterland’s inhabitants: Little Misses and Mr Men.
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