“When spoils are high, predation is present, and time goes on without a proper intervention, violence increasingly is woven into the fabric of life. Violence becomes normal, and thus stable. Peace, then, becomes like violence, threatening to rip the fabric apart and destroy the very nature of being for many. It is not whether people are inherently good or bad, but that people will inherently try to survive.” – eRochefoucauld
Going the difficult route. Staying quiet when you should be absolutely disagreeable. Accepting people, ideas, and outcomes that you know are toxic for you. This doesn’t make for a “strong woman.” This is bitterness. An attitude of virtueless passivity and harmlessness. And the inevitable desire to blame all but yourself for your circumstance. This is the story of weakness some young feminists are running from today.
The strength our society is quick to recognize is the woman is a man’s world. My unlikely hero? Cinderella. A woman full of grace. Who knew that there was a time for mildness, meekness, and knew when it was her time to take her chance for a better life. A woman who knew her values and held on to them despite her struggles. Who when given a chance no matter how small, gave the world sweetness, kindness, and care. And when the world could, it gave it right back to her.
When a time came, to grasp at a better life, she did not say that she was too poor, too unattractive, too undeserving, too wretched. Cinderella was not a victim. She didn’t think herself unworthy. She fought for that chance and took it. With grace, with optimism, and with beauty. For me, Cinderella isn’t about a girl that happened into a fantasy. It is about a girl that kept her dream alive in every way she could and when it faced her she recognized it for what it was and she grabbed it. I hope she never let go.
The first passage of this post was written by Evan, eRochefoucauld, for a paper in grad school. It stuck with me because of the of truth I found in his words. Our environment impacts us, more than anything else. It molds us and we do our best to survive and fit into what the world has provided. Holding on to anything other than what is in front of us is rare.
“Peace, then, becomes like violence, threatening to rip the fabric apart and destroy the very nature of being for many.”
Cinderella was faced with hate, belittlement, resentment, and shame. But what we saw her hold onto was a dream. A deep authentic value that she held for herself and for her own sake. Within that she found peace. Even when all had fallen around her, the fairy godmother appeared. One of the many instances in this story where the goodness and beauty Cinderella put into the world, I believe, came back to her.
Through these photos, I want to share with you softness and strength. I want to show the strength of a woman’s confidence. Beauty as a virtue that can be held not only externally, but also within. Desire as a strength that lies within beauty. And I attempt to share the agelessness and simplicity of these concepts stylistically.