Have you heard of the show Girl Meets World? If not, it’s a spin off of the beloved show Boy Meets World. It follows the story of Riley Matthews, Cory and Topanga’s daughter, and her friends. Riley is played by the actress Rowan Blanchard, who has shown herself to be very vocal on subjects such as on feminism and other important issues. Last year on June 27th, she gave a speech (pdf) on gender inequality in youth. In her speech she mentions her episode of Girl Meets World called “Girl Meets STEM”, an episode that leads Riley to find out that girls tend to lose interest in STEM fields because they can be discouraged or pushed aside from them. At the end of it, Riley and her best friend in the show, Maya, both declare themselves “big-time feminists”. It became the first Disney show- the first children’s show- to say the word feminist. Bustle wrote an article that touches a little bit more on feminism in Girl Meets World.
Moving on to more about Rowan, she’s a 14 year old girl who isn’t afraid to speak her mind on topics many previous Disney stars stayed silent on. In summer 2015, she answered an ask someone sent to her on tumblr about her thoughts on white feminism. A part of her response was: “‘White feminism’ forgets all about intersectional feminism. The way a black woman experiences sexism and inequality is different from the way a white woman experiences sexism and inequality. Likewise with trans-women and Hispanic women,” She goes on to say why police brutality and race issues are feminist issues too. The closing to her response: “To only acknowledge feminism from a one sided view when the literal DEFINITION is the equality of the sexes is not feminism at all. We need to be talking about this more. Discussion leads to change. Xo, Row.”, Shows us that Rowan is open to talking about different viewpoints and not just one that stick with her narrative, something we should all try to do.