23 March 2012

A Good BFF is Hard to Find

I recently started following MWF Seeking BFF.  Just like Rachel, all my college BFFs are far-flung around the country.  Forget about A Good Man (thanks Flannery!), a BFF is really hard to find (but it is possible ;-)  I appreciate that Rachel is bringing this struggle out into the open!

How does this relate to books?  Well, some of the latest "strong female leads" of the last decade do not have BFFs.

Read more here: It's Hunger Games Day!

But I don't think this is a new problem.  Throughout literature, few women or girls have BFFs.  Alice.  Dorothy. (Sure, she had Scarecrow, Woodsman, and Lion, but none of those are women/girls.)  Jo in Little Women.  Elizabeth Bennet in Pride & Prejudice.  Laura in the Little House series.  (Sisters, yes, but no BFF - it's different.)  Emma.  (She treated her women peers as projects more than friends.)  Certainly not forlorn Jane Eyre (her BFF tragically dies early in the tale) or Daisy Buchanan (Great Gatsby), or even Hermione Grainger.

I have to think about this some more.

If Helen of Troy had had a BFF, would she have run off with Paris?  Did Penelope (of the Odyssey) have a BFF (would have made all that weaving a little less tedious, I think)?

Why can men in literature have a "Band of Brothers," or even just a "buddy" (a la Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid) but it's rare among female literary characters?

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