By Trix Wilkins
A hundred and fifty years later, Little Women still matters. Here are some reasons why…
It’s personal to Louisa May Alcott
It’s partially an expression of things Louisa had wished for out of life, some of which came true, some came partially true, some of which remained wishes…
We still struggle with God and faith
We have unanswered questions. Who is God? What does life mean? Can I bargain with God? What about when I’m angry? Little Women wrestles with these.
We still get rejected and we still have disappointed dreams
…And when these inevitable things happen what do we do (or what do we not do…)? Are we alone or does this happen to anyone else? (Yes. The March sisters.)
We will all face death…and illness…and loss of loved ones
Is it a treatise on “how to face these things well”? No – but it is a companion, or I should say the March sisters are companions, and do face these things as will we.
Money still isn’t the end-all and it’s nice to be reminded
Yes we’re reminded that money matters, because we need it for food and medicine and education. But we’re also reminded that there is wealth that cannot be measured.
We still suffer, and see suffering, and see needs
There are still those small, every day seemingly inconsequential acts of kindness that are available to us for us to do, and Little Women reminds us how they matter.
Writing is still hard work
Little Women is partly for all the Jo Marches who have ever dreamed of writing and who enjoy wallowing with others in all the frustration and heartache, passion and delight.
It’s controversial, thus inspires debate and creativity
Not just Jo and Laurie (though that is a favorite controversy of mine), but about women, family, career, faith, money… Little Women generates angst as well as admiration!
We are still annoyed by (and desperately care for) our siblings
How do the March sisters deal with this? Some examples are to be emulated; others not; all are to be laughed and cried at and inspire reflection upon our own sibling relations.
We still love
We still love our family. And we still notice we love someone and long for them to love us. Sometimes we see them love someone else. We fall out of love. We fall in love.