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Writing with a purpose

As I write, I make the work entertaining and build interesting characters. At the same time, my books express my artists intentions with themes presented as stories and not lectures. One of the themes I explore is gender equality.

Beyond the Shallow Bank
This morning, on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) magazine format radio program The Current, there was a half hour discussion about the history of pockets with a particular emphasis on how women’s garments lack them, or the pockets are so small they’re useless.

Men have had useful pockets since the 15th century. Women’s garments only saw pockets in off-the-shelf products in the early 20th century, and they were mostly for show. Woman have spoken and written about this exclusion for centuries. It was raised during the women’s suffrage movement. Even today, pockets on women’s clothes are so small a smart phone can’t fit into them. They must be carried in handbags, which one suffragette referred to as, “The bag of oppression.”

In Beyond the shallow Bank, my historical women’s fiction novel with elements of Celtic mythology, the main character, Margaret Talbot, lives in the male dominated society of 1901, but she doesn’t simply accept her supposed place. Here is a quote from the book concerning women and pockets.

“She got down from the wagon, tucked the sketchbook under one arm and slid a pencil into the pocket she had sewn into her skirt, wondering, as she had many times before, why women’s garments were not designed with such a useful feature.”

Later in the book, Margaret comments on the privileges enjoyed only by men as she defies convention.


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