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Our meeting with the next royal child represented yet another example of Meghan Markle’s subtle activism. She may be colouring within the lines, but her tone is vibrant.
As the collective eye has turned to Windsor Castle, and the unveiling of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s son, the cherub otherwise known as Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor, it’s best that we focus on the mother that birthed him. Previously, Hazz and Meg noted that they would be eschewing tradition, denying us the usual maternity-ward photo opp in favour of showing us said child when it was fully cooked.
It seems a tiny move, but it represents an undercurrent of rebellion that has run underneath the ascension of Markle. In the debut image, Prince Harry was holding the newborn, rather than Markle. It is also worth noting that Markle wore a man’s blazer (designed by female menswear designer Grace Wales Bonner) that highlighted her post-birth baby bump, flipping an elegant bird to the history of royal mothers obfuscating their post-labour bod.
Yes, for the rest of us, it seems rebellion within tolerated limits. Something akin to applying graffiti a wall with chalk, but within the stuffed conservative fartknockery of the British monarchy, Markle’s feminist principles and progressive mindset is a revolutionary force.
Long before she had a title, Markle has built a long history of noted activism. At the age of eleven, she took on Procter & Gamble for a sexist advertising campaign and won. She’s a women’s advocate for the United Nations and a global ambassador for World Vision Canada. Post title, she is the only royal to identify as a feminist, not just on the monarchy’s official website, but also her appearances on panels and on international tours.
She’s not a radical activist by any means, and as a member of the Windsor family, it seems unlikely that she’ll go the full Hawkes in order to wring change. She is expected to steer clear of politics, but her challenge remains with the antiquated British press, who have freely swung the blades of race and gender against her. Despite this, she’s managed to keep true to her progressive roots, articulating her beliefs in small but significant ways. Consider the fashion in which she debuted her son is another of those, a warm smile with a middle finger behind it.
Long may she reign.