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Can I, as a Feminist, call my daughter Violet?

(57 Posts)
Laetitia1 Fri 01-Aug-14 00:06:50

After many a year of adoring botanical names for girls, it suddenly dawned on me (and I hate myself for this, so do forgive me) that choosing a flower name is perhaps not the most feminist thing to do, for the reason that flowers are above all valued for their appearance and fragrance and are ultimately useless. Then I got all cross at the idea that it is only females who are given flower names, presumably because males are not prized above all for their aesthetic qualities. I am Most Miffed that I have had this thought, as it has quite put me off all my girls' names. I have also put myself off names with an 'ee' -sounding ending for the reason that it is the way of signalling the diminutive in English, which, once again, does not sit well with my feminist ruminations. Am I insane? thanks

TinklyLittleLaugh Fri 01-Aug-14 00:15:31

Flowers are not useless though are they? The fruit/seed of a plant comes from the flower, it is the reproductive part of the plant. Like women, flowers are not just about how they look; they are essential.

Love flower names myself. Love flowers. Still consider myself a feminist.

BOFster Fri 01-Aug-14 00:17:58

I saw a feminist art company's name today, 'Shrieking Violet'. That's good enough for me and apt for a toddler grin.

bewleysisters Fri 01-Aug-14 00:23:26

Yes you can. Suffragette colours are violet and green and also here a is Violet for inspiration.

ancientbuchanan Fri 01-Aug-14 00:24:02

Yes you are bonkers.

What's in a name? A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.

Some flowers are medicinal. Some not.

Choose a name you like and stick with it, that's the most feminist thing to do. Ok, trixibelle not my fave,
but sod it. If you want it, why not.

Wasn't violetta the name of the dame aux camellias? She got what she wanted...

BikeRunSki Fri 01-Aug-14 00:25:56

Yep, violet is a suffragette colour, so could hardly be more feminist!!!
Green - Give
White- Women
Violet - the Vote

TheWoollybacksWife Fri 01-Aug-14 00:30:35

Without plants there would be no human life on earth - therefore you are naming your child after something essential.

noblegiraffe Fri 01-Aug-14 00:31:47

Why not call her something macho like Tank or Gun instead? That'll show the patriarchy.

StandsOnGoldenSands Fri 01-Aug-14 00:37:33

Name her after Violet Szabo - a very deserving tribute.

BOFster Fri 01-Aug-14 00:42:27

Good call, Stands. I agree.

MissPricklePants Fri 01-Aug-14 00:43:22

I'm a feminist and my dd has a flower name, almost went with Violet but chose Poppy (which is not too popular around here!) she is 5 and is the most amazing child! Not twee and cutesy but headstrong and determined!

thecuntureshow Fri 01-Aug-14 00:43:58

Flowers are useless?

News to me

iK8 Fri 01-Aug-14 00:46:56

I think she was Violette Szabo.

Op, you may be a leetle bit insane winkgrin

BOFster Fri 01-Aug-14 00:47:42

Maybe it's because it's late, but I'm getting all existential now. Isn't EVERY species of everything basically useless? It just IS.

lettertoherms Fri 01-Aug-14 00:50:47

It's not like you're naming her Fanny Lowerwage.

EthicalPickle Fri 01-Aug-14 00:53:02

Fanny Lowerwage. grin .....Too funny

TheFillyjonk Fri 01-Aug-14 00:53:41

Don't cut off your own nose to spite your face (wait, nice faces with noses aren't very feminist, are they? grin). If you like the name Violet, use it. Violets are not useless - they're used in fragrances, dyes and food flavourings. Purple is also a very noble and powerful colour.

ArsenicFaceCream Fri 01-Aug-14 00:58:18

It's not like you're naming her Fanny Lowerwage.


Alisvolatpropiis Fri 01-Aug-14 01:04:07

You are overthinking this.

Surely, given you are such a feminist, giving your daughter a very feminine name should be fine?

You could cut out the middle man and just call her David though.

EthicalPickle Fri 01-Aug-14 01:08:58


Don't name her after the flower name her after Palma Violets, they are really important to me

You could also just name her after the colour violet, you need violet for rainbows.

ZeroSomeGameThingy Fri 01-Aug-14 01:18:22

You are joking yes?

Have you not heard of bees?

Or pharmaceutical companies?

Or the apple in the garden of Eden?

Flowers are just about the most powerful thing on Earth.

maggiethemagpie Fri 01-Aug-14 06:12:54

And I thought feminism was all about empowering choice, not restricting your choices! Yes, I think you may be very slightly insane. Why not call her violet if you want to?

maggiethemagpie Fri 01-Aug-14 06:13:53

Ps I had some violet liqueur with my Prosecco last week. Very nice it was too.

weatherall Fri 01-Aug-14 06:26:20

I think you should repost this in fwr rather than baby names.

People here love flower names!

From a feminist pov yes there is lots of sexism in baby naming.

Girls often get 'pretty' frilly names, usually ending in a vowel or vowel sound.

Boys often get 'strong' steady names that end in consonants.

Violet is probably the most feminist of flower names because of the suffragette colour and ending in a consonant.

Really from a feminist pov we should try to move towards gender neutral names... But that is a whole other thread. And I'm a hypocrite there.

rosemarytwinkle Fri 01-Aug-14 06:40:41

In some languages there are male names that are flowers. I can't think of any in English but certainly where I live there are both male and female versions of the name 'marigold'. And this is quite a patriarchal society.

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