Angelina Jolie responds to gender policing of Shiloh

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I generally wouldn’t give more attention to the ridiculousness that’s been created by tabloids around this, but considering the larger impact these sources have, it’s worth noting. During promotion for her new movie Salt, Angelina Jolie just had to be asked about her and Brad Pitt’s child, Shiloh, who prefers to wear “boy’s clothes” and wear her hair short.

As many of you probably already know, entertainment tabloids have been gender policing the shit out of the 4-year old and claiming bad parenting as Angelina is “turning Shiloh into a boy.” (You must read Miriam’s awesome post about why this is absurd and fucked up.) So I was happy to see her bite back a bit and defend her child in a recent interview:

“I would never be the kind of parent to force somebody to be something they are not. I think that is just bad parenting.

Children should be allowed to express themselves in whatever way they wish without anybody judging them because it is an important part of their growth. Society always has something to learn when it comes to the way we judge each other, label each other. We have far to go.”

Good on her.

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4 Comments

  1. battle angel alita
    Posted July 16, 2010 at 7:34 pm | Permalink

    Nice to see somthing positive about Jolie on a feminist site. its been a long while. this is one of the many reasons i am a fan of her.

  2. mysticapple
    Posted July 17, 2010 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

    It’s interesting to see this happening with a girl as I’d always imagined it was easier with a girl than a boy.
    My little boy went through a big “pink” phase and would gravitate to all the girls clothing that was brightly colored and sparkly. He even picked out a little pink handbag for himself, which he loved and took everywhere. He also told me he wanted to grow up to be a princess, because princesses are beautiful.
    It was all so innocent and I had no problem with it but it raised a lot of eyebrows. Finally at his school they insisted that he conform to his gender. Essentially it was peer pressure that caused me to cave in.
    I feel like its wrong but the pressure of being seen as a “bad parent” because I allowed him to be himself was just too much. People worried I was going to “make him gay”. I really wish there was more awareness around gender at this age, and especially information for people like me who just don’t have a clue about how to deal with it and the opinions of others. :(

  3. Anonymous
    Posted July 17, 2010 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

    yes. Win.

  4. ebetty
    Posted July 18, 2010 at 10:27 pm | Permalink

    i think this is the first time i’ve ever thought “my, angelina jolie is incredibly beautiful.”
    brava.

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