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Why Monopoly’s Removal of the Thimble is Such a Big Deal

In 2013, there was a cry to get rid of the iron from the select tokens of the beloved board game: Monopoly. The iron had been around since 1935, however, it was symbolic of the women working in textile mills at the time. While of course there was no intentional sexism, it was a relief for feminists every where to see such a domesticated token removed from the game and replaced by the cat.

The same process has just been used to cut the thimble token out as well. Monopoly held a poll in which players could vote on the object they would most like to remove. Calling all feminists! The thimble is also a stereotypical item used to represent women as they work at home, sewing, cooking and cleaning. In this new day and age, it’s important to use objects and symbols that are more relative to modern times and updated to coincide with our current society. This is why a computer, hashtag or emoji are the options to replace the thimble in the next distribution of Monopoly games.

While some may think a thimble is a lot to get worked up about and may grow annoyed at this constant push for equality, it’s necessary. Equality isn’t just in the big picture of voting and suffrage. Sure, the big idea is most important, but the little things matter too. Monopoly, as well as any other game, is played across the world by kids and adults of all ages. If girls, starting at a young age, come to associate themselves with the thimble and domesticated housework and boys grow attached to the dog or car, then there is an issue.

Token aren’t supposed to have genders.

With our new and growing society, we must break down stereotypes and stigma surrounding gender roles that have lasted for much too long and instead create a new system, a new world, in which everyone is equally represented.

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Ariel Zedric is a student at Tufts University. When she's not studying, you can find her wandering around on her blog at arielzedric.wordpress.com. Contact via email at ariel.zedric@gmail.com or on Twitter or Instagram @arielzedric

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