When we grow up, most of us go through a period where we identify with all types of characters to figure out who we are. Celebrities, activists, managers, sportspeople etc., they all serve as canvas for our own ideas. This function partially explains celebrity status. The same often happens when we read.
I have no specific character of which I’d say I fully identify with him or her. But when a story really gets me it’s normally because there is something reasonating with my own current situation. Or it reminds me of struggles I went through.
Amongs those characters are:
- Christiana Erxleben. She was the first woman admitted to med school, and I was the first person in my whole family to attend high school and university. My parents made quite a fuss about it, which I detested. ‘The first to study, and then as the only girl’! I am more than grateful that I never realised this as special. It just never occured to me that my gender could impact my professional path. That’s my Christiana bit.
- Hermione is another one, especially the year in the Goblet of Fire, although she is so much younger. But being smart and considered one of the boys, that’s me. I always had male friends, and I always seemed to be the one girl not appropriate for asking her out. For many years I suffered from the impression that the very idea of me being a potential girl-friend just didn’t occur. Interestingly, my female friends used to envy me for being respected by the guys. I find it very sad that women feel like they have to choose between being respected and gettng laid. The opposite is true; by expecting to be respected you just weed out the idiots.
- D’Artagnan. As described by Dumas. A Musketeer. Smart, courageous, a good friend. I never wanted to be a queen or a princess or a mistress. I always wanted to be like one of the Musketeers. Free spirited, able to stand up for themselves and part of a pack of best friends who risk everything for each other, and support each other with frank oppinions and the occasional slap. That is pretty much who I hope to be. In nicer dresses, though.
One for all, and all for one.