The idea of the Guardian Princesses was first conceptualized by Professor Setsu Shigematsu, Associate Professor in the Media and Cultural Studies Department at University of California, Riverside. As an educator and mother, Setsu was concerned with today’s overwhelming princess culture and how it is marketed to children. Her refusal to purchase princess products for her own then-three-year-old only seemed to enhance their appeal in her daughter’s eyes. Therefore, rather than rejecting this princess culture altogether, she decided to alter the content and social meaning of the princess through Princess Terra, which was written for her daughter’s fifth birthday.
The Guardian Princess Alliance now consists of a diverse group of parents, educators, students, artists and professionals, who are committed to creating better alternatives to the “traditional princess story”. We believe that both the dominant and implicit messages of the traditional princesses have negative repercussions on children, especially girls.
We believe that the princess should be a positive role model whose power does not lie in beauty and royalty, but instead in knowledge and positive action that promotes a harmonious relationship with other living beings and the planet.