According to Elena Favilli and Francesca Cavallo, co-founders of Timbuktu Labs, around 95 per cent of the books and TV shows they grew up with lacked girls in prominent positions. In the fairytales we’re used to, girls tend to be princesses or a secondary character whose character is shaped in relation to the male protagonist. For Favilli and Cavallo, the norm doesn’t represent the future in children’s media. “Because we are girls. Our entrepreneurial journey made us understand how important it is for girls to grow up surrounded by female role models. It helps them to be more confident and set bigger goals,” wrote the pair.
They created Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls, a book packed with 100 bedtime stories about the life of 100 extraordinary women from the past and the present, illustrated by 60 female artists from all over the world.
Each woman’s story is written and illustrated in the style of a fairytale. It features stories about the most unconventional women of our time. These include great women, from Elizabeth I to Serena Williams.
But the book is not just for girls. According to Favilli and Cavallo, boys can through the stories learn to identify and empathise with female heroes: “The stories in the book are a great source of inspiration for anyone, male or female, child or adult.”