Wednesday, August 17, 2005
On a recent visit to an old friend's childhood home, Amie discovered a piece of board-gaming history, and I'm compelled to share it. It's mere existence fascinates the hell out of me...
It's called "What Shall I Be?", and I imagine that when the Bay Shore, NY-based Selchow & Righter Company sent it to toy store shelves in 1966 that they saw it as a progressive step. "Let's get our little American girls ready for the wide-open working world!".
Looking at it now, nearly 40 years removed, it's mostly just a riot, or maybe kinda sad, depending on how far you think workplace gender equality has come since the mid-sixties.
Your goal? Be the first player to become a 'Career Girl' in your chosen field by collecting School Cards, Subject Cards, and Personality Cards that can either help or hinder you. The laughs start when you see what six future careers are available for young girls to choose from...
Yup, that's it. Teacher (College), Actress (Drama School), Nurse (Nursing School), Model (Charm School), Ballet Dancer (Ballet School), or Airline Hostess (Airline School).
Next, some of the wide-ranging subjects you'll tackle along the way...
How about some of the admirable qualities you'll need to have in order to succeed in your chosen field?...
And lastly, the best part. Check out the detriments that would help toughen up our future female workforce for any eventual disappointments...
So how many young minds do you think this little game helped shape?
It appears there was a boy's version as well, for future Statesmen, Scientists, Athletes, Doctors, Engineers, and Astronauts. Sorry, no teaching for you, young men. And girls, don't even think about medical school or joining the track team. There are rules to every game, right?
update 8/26: nerdgirl has some updated career cards, more suited to our modern age.
live in cambridge, ma
on november 14th, 2008
previously: joy formidable - boston 2011
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