Throughout “The Carrie Diaries,” Candace Bushnell’s young-adult prequel to “Sex and the City,” the 17-year-old Carrie Bradshaw proclaims herself a feminist. She’s read all the female-empowerment books her late mother loved; she rebels against the notion that she should act stupid so certain boys will like her more; and she vividly recalls once telling her crush at age 12, “I believe marriage is a legalized form of prostitution.”
“In terms of ’The Carrie Diaries,’ because it takes place in the early ’80s, feminism was something you talked about at the dinner table. It was everywhere in a sense,” Bushnell told us when she stopped by MTV last week. “I don’t think Carrie Bradshaw could be Carrie Bradshaw if she didn’t have a real awareness of feminism.”
Even now that we’ve got a woman leading the House of Representatives and one serving as Secretary of State, girls should know how recently it was that men didn’t think they belonged in the workplace.
“In the late ’70s and early ’80s, society was very perplexed by this new reality of so many young women in the workplace,” the author recalled. “Now we take it for granted. Back then it was a struggle, and there was a lot of sexism, and it was blatant. You could not walk down the street without experiencing real sexism. From people saying things to you on the street to people grabbing you on the subway to working in an office and men making comments. That was a standard part of every woman’s day.”
And in terms of the Carrie we know and love from the original book and TV show, Bushnell asserts that a firm belief in women’s rights is what has always driven her character.
“It’s one of the things that makes her a fighter and makes her true to herself,” she said. “She has a purpose in life. That’s one of the reasons she wants to become a writer.”
Have you read “The Carrie Diaries”? Share your reviews in the comments!