Here’s the problem. The kyriarchy tells us that there are two gendered sets of virtues, and that masculine virtues are better than feminine virtues. For example:
- Masculine: Strength, Courage, Honor, Determination, Combat Skills
- Feminine: Compassion, Prudence, Negotiation, Calm, Emotional Intelligence, Domestic Skills…
Ultimately, Merida very slightly for one moment adopts a couple of “feminine” virtues to resolve the main subplot, but the climax of the movie entails Elinor needing to take on and learn to appreciate “masculine” virtues in herself and her daughter, and the ending shows Elinor embracing and joining in Merida’s wilderness romps. Which is fine and all, but it’s still saying that the “masculine” virtues are better than the feminine virtues. It’s not saying “Be yourself,” it’s saying “Be yourself as long as you display traditionally masculine virtues; if you have traditionally feminine virtues, change.”
How did I not even notice this?