Pinterest, Anne Shirley, Romance, and Identity



On any typical weeknight, I often find myself browsing the great abyss that is Pinterest, dreaming and becoming inspired for my future endeavors. One of the things that I’ve noticed—and admittedly have considered—is the trend of a wedding themed after your favorite childhood book or movie.

My favorite childhood story is Anne of Green Gables. I watched the 1980s movie series starring Megan Follows on repeat as a young girl; and if I’m being honest, I still watch these movies on repeat at 21 years old. Anne’s charm is one that I have fallen in love with over and over. She has always inspired me to be imaginative and to work for the things that I love the most. Due to Anne’s incredible sense of fashion and swoon-worthy love story she is a popular choice for the themed wedding trend on Pinterest. But that’s not all that makes Anne’s story Pinterest perfect wedding theme. In addition to the old-timey charm (Did I mention that the story is based in the 1910s?) Anne’s romance story–specifically as depicted in the 1980s movie series–has some serious connections to common romantic trends of today.

  1. Anne believes in an ideal man.

As a young girl, Anne derives her sense of romance from her imagination and stories she has read. Less concerned with romance than school and friendly competition Anne maintains the naïve belief that the perfect man of her dreams exists, and she would gladly cut-out anyone who would try to steer her otherwise.

  1. Anne pursues her career before romance.

As she grows a little more mature, Anne struggles with the imperfections of men around her. Her bosom friend, Diana Barry, marries a man that is practical but much different from Diana’s ideal. Anne is also pursued by a man that is different from her ideal. However, she denies this man’s proposal and moves away to pursue her career.

  1. Anne recognizes different types of romance.

After moving, a man in Anne’s new town seems to fulfill her romantic ideals—tall, dark, handsome, ect. She pursues this relationship and realizes that there is a certain level of romance ad connection. In this time, Anne also discovers her desire for the comfort of home, a desire that leads her to reconsider her early ideas of romance in order to pursue a different type of romance.

I have made it a point to highlight the key features that I identify as romantic trends in today’s culture. These include believing in an ideal man, pursuing a career before romance, and recognizing different types of romance. The similarities in Anne’s romantic development and the romantic development of girls and women in our culture today reflect the greater trend of women relying on heroines to direct our footsteps in today’s social world—AKA using this heroine’s story as a theme for something as personal and intimate as a wedding.

Another matter of interest is that these films were created 80 years after the original story was written, but that is for another blog post and another time.

As a heroine of many young women for the last 100 years (or in the case of this movie series’ interpretation—30 years), it is interesting to consider the implications that Anne’s interests can have on the social world today, or vice versa. Does the heroine create meaning in the social world, or does the social world reinforce the value of the heroine? How do you view your childhood story characters? What does that say about your identity and how you interact in the social world?


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1 thought on “Pinterest, Anne Shirley, Romance, and Identity

  1. How did I know you would write about “Green Gables”? You’ve been obsessed with it since you were a little girl! Very well written Baby Girl! I love you!

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