Nursery rhymes

(6 Posts)
Atlas15 Tue 02-Aug-16 00:42:28

Has anyone noticed that a lot of nursery rhymes start with the dad first then the mum then the brother then the sister.
I have found this in the Daddy finger song.
The giant turnip story.
The farmer wants a wife song.
There must be more but I'm tired right now. Also there seems to be a lot of evil step-mums.

powershowerforanhour Tue 02-Aug-16 07:53:31

Same thing with groups in children's stories. The leader is the eldest and always male (Famous Five, Secret Seven, Swallows and Amazons, Fred in Scooby Doo). Also always tall, steady, brave and conventionally good looking (features such as ginger hair, glasses, short/fat/skinny stature, absent minded or fiery temper will be distributed amongst the followers).

TeiTetua Tue 02-Aug-16 14:33:16

Nursery rhymes and children's stories are just a reflection of our idea of entertainment in general, where most fiction is about male adventures, with women playing secondary roles, if any. In fact you could say that's the way people have believed it's the way the world ought to be, with women staying home waiting for returning heroes.

sausageeggbacon111 Wed 03-Aug-16 19:48:23

A lot of Nursery Rhymes date back to the middle ages. I doubt there are too many that are post suffragette. If you want to change things in terms of nursery rhymes you will probably need to write a few. My ex mum in law knew the muffin man and would sometimes go to try for freebies at the end of the day. But even that one dates back to 1888 so it does give a good indication of the issues with having any expectations.

booklooker Wed 10-Aug-16 17:49:23

I'm not sure I agree with the OP, there are plenty of nursery rhymes about girls; Little Miss Muffet, Little Bo Peep, Mary had a little Lamb are amongst the first that occur to me.

However I do agree that women have had a hard time within Fairy Tales, I don't think Disney has helped here

LassWiTheDelicateAir Wed 10-Aug-16 18:17:49

I don't agree either. These were my favourite nursery rhymes books when my son was small. They are traditional rhymes but have a panoply of characters, male, female, children, kings, queens and commoners and animals all playing their parts. There are plenty with only female characters.

Ring-a-ring o' Roses: A Book of Nursery Rhymes
www.amazon.co.uk/Ring-ring-Roses-Nursery-Rhymes/dp/1558586717

Over the Hills and Far Away: A Book of Nursery Rhymes
www.amazon.co.uk/Over-Hills-Far-Away-Nursery/dp/1856180476.

I don't agree about fairy tales either- traditional fairy tales often involve a bright and resourceful girl (princess or otherwise) coming to the rescue of a hapless male. The Snow Queen and East of the Sun, West of the Moon are 2 examples but there are others.

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