Artwork: AMC '23

A Knight's Quest

Author: RYSL
As seen in: We Like To Have Fun #

The object of your next quest is to smite a dragon. No, not ‘he.’ This dragon is female. In fact, you will be taking a well-informed, socially conscious approach this time around.

Prior to your quest, please acquaint yourself with feminist and gender theory. Archaic conceptions of gender roles will not create a respectful environment for your conquest. Besides, your most important weapon will be a nuanced understanding of the performative nature of gender. 

Upon arriving at the mystical mountain under which the dragon lives, she might roar and breathe fire on you. But hear her out. Making the dragon feel heard is key. Don’t silence her. 

Okay, now picture this. You and the dragon are schmoozing, now in her cave. She lays down on her pile of gold, revealing her vulnerable underbelly but also that she has less gold than her male counterparts. What do you do next? Wrong. Go find the nearest male dragon, slay it, and offer 20% of its gold to the female dragon. A knight’s true mission is rectifying structural inequality. 

Now you’re ready. Lunge at the gap in the dragon’s scales, stabbing just as fiercely as you would a male dragon. In fact, stab even more ferociously, to empower her. 

As the dragon breathes her final breath, do not celebrate or gloat. Allow yourself a small smile, but understand that while you were simply battling a dragon, she was battling societal and cultural forces that have existed long before either of you were born.