Reclaiming Spinster

What do you think of when you hear the word spinster? In addition to thinking of an unmarried woman, you probably picture a woman who is unattractive, or dowdy — someone who would have a hard time attracting a member of the opposite sex due to her appearance, or personality, or both. But if you look at the dictionary definition, being a spinster doesn’t have anything to do with looks.

1. A woman who has remained single beyond the conventional age for marrying.
2. A single woman.
3. A person whose occupation is spinning.

But still, there aren’t a lot of attractive single woman out there referring to themselves as spinsters — or at least, there didn’t used to be.

When I did a blog search for spinster, I came up with a list of women who are using the word not just in posts they’re writing, but as part of their official blog name. And why not? There are other terms used to describe females that women have taken control of and reclaimed as their own — look at the popular usage of the word “bitch.” (Or Jane Fonda’s casual use of the c-word on the Today show, when she was describing the title of her monologue as part of The Vagina Monologues.) I see no reason why spinster shouldn’t be added to the mix.

I can’t help it — I love when women proclaim loud and proud that they’re fine with being single. This doesn’t mean they wouldn’t be just as happy with a partner; it’s that they don’t require the presence of someone else to lead a happy, fulfilling life.

[Read the rest of this post at BlogHer]

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