After overhearing my conversation with Priscilla, in which I was discouraging her from checking out an armful of Barbie and Polly Pocket paperbacks, our kindly librarian directed the both of us to a series of stories starring a trio of yellow haired, sweet and wholesome Swedish girls - three sisters named Flicka, Ricka, and Dicka. Originally published in the mid-1950's, the plot lines in this vintage set of books are simple, peaceful, and uncomplicated (Flicka, Ricka, Dicka Bake a Cake, Find a Dog, etc.). I am drawn in, fascinated by the colorful illustrations. It has been such a long time since I've seen little girls depicted as...well, little girls, as opposed to miniature sized women starring in rock bands, setting fashion trends, or treating parents, neighbors, and teachers as peers. Was there really a period in history when childhood was cherished, protected even, by a responsible and ethical society filtering images, ideas, and aggressive marketing techniques deemed "too mature" for that magical yet fleeting season of lightheartedness deserved by all young children, before the onset of puberty and the "enlightenment," passion and turmoil that accompanies it? Am I so naive to wish that pokey puppys and burnt baked goods were the only type of dilemmas our kids were exposed to - ones solvable without the aid of prescription medications, G-rated, age-appropriate, innocent?
5 days ago