The Guardian Princess Alliance On Girl Power!
Setsu Shingematsu is the mother of a five-year-old daughter who has taken it upon herself to reinvent the traditional princess image through a series called The Guardian Princess Alliance.
Shingematsu worried about the way society represents princesses in the media. She believed these distorted images might be affecting how young girls see themselves.
When she asked her daughter's friends what they associated with princesses, they would talk about their looks and how pretty they were instead of the qualities that made them good and empowered people.
On her daughter's birthday, she decided to write an alternative princess story that both kids and parents could enjoy. The princesses in her new series are modern and environmentally conscious, and they're not waiting to be rescued by Prince Charming.
Shingematsu put together a team to assist her in self-publishing these stories after she was encouraged by other parents. This team included friends Ritsi Marco and Ashanti McMillon.
"The Guardian Princesses, they are more like, go there and do it for yourself," Marco says, "You can do anything you put your mind into it. You don't have to wait for anybody. You can work together with Prince Charming and do stuff for the world, but you don't have to sit there and wait for him to rescue you."
With the Guardian Princesses, the team also made it a goal to represent a diverse group of young women representing a mixture of many cultures. This allows any girl to see herself within these stories.
After a lot of work, and an Indiegogo crowd funding campaign, Shingematsu and The Guardian Princesses Alliance has three books ready to be published in January.
The first three books in the Inaugural Trilogy are Princess Terra and King Abaddon, Princess Mariana and Lixo Island, and Princess Vinnea and the Gulavores. These princesses are the guardians of the earth, the sea, and plant life respectively.
The authors are hoping that their other four princesses, Aniya, Saya, Ten Ten and Leilani, will soon be getting their own books as well. We hope this series is a huge success in changing what princesses are all about!