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It turns out that almost no one in Britain wants to be Kate Middleton, despite her incredible hat collection. Newsweek Europe commissioned a survey published by YouGov asking the British public about the monarchy, and the results are shocking, especially considering how fanatically Kate and the royals are covered by the press. Only 1% of women surveyed wished that they could be Kate. And 89% of women wouldn't want to trade places with Kate for even one day.
According to those surveyed, Kate and Prince William rank third and fourth place as the public's favorite royal. That honor goes to Prince Harry, with the Queen as runner up. And only 6% of men surveyed wished that they were married to Kate or dating Kate. But 64% of those surveyed believe that Kate has an "important" role in the royal family.
Ed Docx at Newsweek writes:
On the one hand, therefore, we have the portrait of a woman to whom the British public no longer attach themselves emotionally; they are no longer psychologically invested in her life; they do not project their own identities onto her; she is not a repository for the nation's sense of itself, nor of its dramas. On the other hand, there is strong evidence that people believe her to be intelligent, strong, responsible and privately influential. This paradoxical perception is perhaps best captured by the fact that 46% of women think she has influence in what she says in public and 41% don't."Perhaps the fact that Kate's life seems so remarkably constrained compared to the average women's life has something to do with the fact that Brits don't want to be in her shoes. Journalist Germaine Greer tells Newsweek:
Kate is not even allowed to decorate her own houses. Even the wives of the American presidents get to do that. The whole thing is a mad anachronism. The 'firm' tell us that the first born will now become the monarch regardless of sex. Well, big fucking deal! Kate is not allowed to have an interest in modern culture, even in art – to collect, to attend openings. She is made to appear absolutely anodyne. She cannot do or say anything spontaneous. She has learned what she has to do and say and how to do and say it in the approved way. Spontaneity will get her in trouble.Another choice Greer quote: "Kate is a great deal more intelligent than the rest of the royals. She has been put in charge of William. She has a bastard of a job."
Greer also worries about Kate's weight and her health. "The girl is too thin. Meanwhile, she is vomiting her guts up and shouldn't have been made to go through all this again so soon. It's not so much that she has to be a womb, but she has to be a mother. I would hope after this one she says, 'That's it. No more'."
Even Kate's life story is what Newsweek calls "quite literally that old pernicious fairytale: wait for a prince, become a princess and then cede all authority to the man while assuming the subservient role of mother and wife." But the fact that Kate is highly educated, has an "approachable background," and married for love could help the monarchy continue to be relevant. But maybe Kate needs to speak for herself.
"We have seen change in terms of the royal family in recent years, and I think Kate represents a different era, but she hasn't spoken," said Caroline Watson, director and co-founder of Progressive Women.
· The Duchess of Cambridge: How Britain Stopped Believing in the Royal Fairytale [Newsweek]
· Britney Can't Stop Thinking About Kate Middleton in Her Lingerie Line [Racked]
· The World Will Be Deprived of Two Days of Kate Middleton Style [Racked]
· The Definitive Guide to Kate Middleton's Weird Hats [Racked]
· Longtime Royals Reporter Divulges the Unspoken Rules for Covering Kate & Wills [Racked]