Looking around at prominent female figures today, it’s evident that the pickings are slim.
Reality TV stars like Kim Kardashian may be the epitome of modern beauty, but their morals are severely lacking.
Girls who were once teen role models have grown up to become bad influences; you’d be hard pressed to find anyone close to the role models we used to have that inspired us.
Who can a twenty-something turn to for positive inspiration these days?
It’s time for a blast from the past. In 1956, German director Eduard von Borsody brought the world Liane, Jungle Goddess. Though her appearance is what some would call “uncivilized,” this wild woman has a lot of admirable qualities.
The 1950s weren’t exactly a time when women came out on top. Attitudes toward women were that they should stay in their role as a housewife, and it wasn’t until much later that feminism really made some headway. Liane burst onto the scene as a rarity of her time.
This feminine take on Tarzan is an ideal role model for young women who want to make their own way in the world.
So who exactly is Liane?
Deep in the jungles of Africa, Liane is a wild woman who is discovered by a group of German explorers led by a man named Thoren. Thoren and his companion Jacqueline are saved by Liane when the native Botos try to kill them.
After discovering that Liane is the long-lost granddaughter of shipping tycoon Theo Amelongen, they take her back to Germany, and a family dispute ensues with Theo’s nephew Viktor which leads to both men’s deaths and a foiled plot to get rid of Liane.
Liane eventually returns to the jungle she once called home and celebrates her new inheritance with her friends, both new and old.
As a 25-year-old woman watching this movie, it’s easy to see why Liane is such an admirable character.
What values does she embody ?
Rather than the typical misogynist view that a woman could never survive on her own in the wilds, Liane, Jungle Goddess shows us a woman who is fierce and independent.
Not only did she survive the shipwreck that killed her shipmates, but she also learned to live off the land and befriend the local tribes, gaining their respect.
Her animal companion is as fierce as she is; a lion cub named Simba follows her wherever she goes.
Rather than being a damsel in distress, it is Liane who first rescues Thoren from the Botos.
She has such an influence with them that she is able to simply talk them down, showing that despite her being a woman, she is greatly respected by the men of the tribe.
Her words hold a power that renders a fight unnecessary.
Liane’s strength, kindness and independence make her the kind of woman teenage girls want to grow up to be.
Move over, Wonder Woman. There’s a new female role model in town.