A New Sense of Popular

In the Keywords for Children’s Literature reading that we read, one term that stood out to me the most was the term “popular.” The word popular can be described as something that is widely accepted, liked or known. In the “Meet Kirsten” short story it alludes to the word popular through the character Kirsten, an immigrant from Sweden. Kirsten throughout the novel tries to “fit in” in the new country she now has to call home. In comparison to this novel the recent Microsoft advertisement featuring the first female NFL football coach Katie Sowers, also represented the word popular. Both texts showcase the word popular in a way of coming out of your comfort zone and defying the odds. Kirsten in the novel tries her best to fit into the American culture as it is seen as a “norm” and what everyone around her is doing. One example from the text is when Singing Bird, Kirsten’s friend from an indigenous tribe invites her over to where her tribe resides. During this trip, the chief calls Kirsten “yellow braids” which really makes her think about her self belonging. This allows Kirsten to find herself and return to her family as she knows that is where she belongs. After this experience, Kirsten feels more accustomed to the place she lives and the people she is around. She grows to like the traditions and customs that most people her age like and with that she grows along with her new home. In comparison to this, the Microsoft commercial highlighting the first female NFL football coach Katie Sowers also represents the word popular. The commercial describes Katie as someone who is tearing down barriers and opening doors to what the new normal should be, creating a new sense of the word “popular.” In the commercial, Katie is seen talking about how she always had a passion for football and knew that she was meant to be a part of it. The commercial creates this notion that any girl can do what Katie is doing and that stereotypes should not be a reason to prevent you from doing what you love. Just like in the Meet Kirsten novel Katie in the commercial finds her sense of belonging and is able to create a statement that is widely accepted or “popular” for other girls to follow in her footsteps.

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