Why is that Gertrude feels like she can’t speak?
What prevents her from speaking for herself?
Why does the Queen of Denmark feel powerless to speak to her only son?
There’s a world of conversation around women’s speech lately – the many criticisms of it – the way we are acculturated to believe that nothing we say will be believed, understood or appreciated, if we’re allowed to finish speaking at all.
The many ways a woman can be silenced include:
• constant interruption (1st thing to learn how to say as a girl, “Don’t interrupt me.”)
• disbelief (40 women said Cosby raped them years ago – 1 man said it and finally people begin to believe them)
• extreme self-consciousness (women’s voices on the radio receive non-stop criticism. The numbers of things people complain about: vocal fry, uptick, rising inflections, tones, too high, too low)
• never be heard at all (women speak about 30% as much as men but are thought to be the big talkers. If you say anything at all, you talk too much.)
And more and more.
And even a Queen might be susceptible to these things. Even hundreds of years ago. These patterns are ancient, I’d wager.