Gender-Bending and Introspection
When writing my story, just on a whim, I decided to turn my primary protagonist from male to female. While much of the plot remains the same, I noticed something about myself that startled me.
My character was stronger, and more dynamic, and no longer eclipsed by the secondary protagonist. Which made me realize that this character had similar traits as my other female protagonists in other stories.
It’s as if I subconsciously believe females to somehow be “stronger” and more practical than their male counterparts — that’s despite the fact that I currently find no differences in potentials between male and female minds, but may still take cultural effects into account — which contrary to what we’ve been told in pop-culture and media (you know how the conventional idea goes: They say females are sentimental, while males are rational and practical, which is complete bullshit). This in itself is surprising, because I judge traits by individualism, not class or gender identity.
This doesn’t seem to reveal much about our world, as much as it reveals something about myself. And it’s no wonder that:
1) I tend to fall in love with women who I believe to be psychologically and pragmatically superior to me (such as Jannie, and a few others in my friends list, and others NOT in my friends list because they don’t believe in Facebook).
2) Pop-Media annoys me, because it doesn’t satisfy my soul’s own craving for a “good” female protagonist. (Forget the boobs, sexiness, and constant talk about men and dates that are too cliché; But give me SOMEONE who can immortalize themselves in my mind, like Goethe’s Mephisto, DeathNote’s L, Leblanc’s Lupin, or Stroud’s Bartimaeus…)
If there’s anything you can personally take from this, it’s this: don’t be afraid to turn your world upside down. It refreshes the way you look at the world, and challenges long-held beliefs.