Carole Lombard is considered by many today to have been a “proto-feminist.” A strong advocate for progressive social, economic, and human rights causes, she was staunchly vocal about her views of what she considered “modern womanhood” in press interviews. At the time, the concept of feminism in society was primarily linked with what is generally considered to be its first wave in the 1910s, suffrage - and therefore, many often relegated its significance to an older generation.
Yet, Carole sought many occasions to bring the discourse back into the public conscious in the 1930s, particularly encouraging her female fans to to empower themselves. An ardent liberal who supported Roosevelt’s New Deal, she reconciled her political views with her societal perspective, calling for a “different social order brought about by a women’s economic independence.” Additionally, she argued that women must “make marriage serve us. We cannot be enslaved by it.” She once commented in Movie Mirror, a fan magazine, that: “Look about you and you will see for the first time since the ancient rule of the Amazons, a colony of economically independent women. Here they are rulers of a fantastic kingdom where the wealth is a product of the women. Contrast such a state with other times. Women in kitchens, subservient, mental and physical slaves…with all that went with the so-called double standard contrived by the lordly male.”
“I love everything I do. I’m immensely interested in and enthusiastic in everything I do, everything. No matter what it is I’m doing, no matter how trivial, it isn’t trivial to me. I give it all I got and love it. I love living. I love life.”
Carole Lombard (October 6, 1908 - January 16, 1942)