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 3rd point - Molls, girls and paramours
Karen
Posted: Jun 4 2008, 11:01 AM


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In Ellen's introduction she notes that the women were referred to as "girls" in the press and then that Jean Delany Crompton is credited with begging the press not to "call us molls."


Have any thoughts about the use of the terms "girls" and "molls" and "paramours"?



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Rose Sparrow
Posted: Jun 4 2008, 07:21 PM


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Whenever I heard the term moll, there was usually a word that preceded it, 'gun'.
So in my mind, the 'gun moll' was that stereotypical image potrayed in the movies, like 'Bonnie and Clyde'. Part of the gang, killers and thieves if need be.

I think I also read that a 'moll' is another word for a prostitute.
I'll tell you that if I were one of these girls, I would rather the public think I was with a gangster because he cared or loved me and not because I was just sleeping with him!







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Karen
Posted: Jun 4 2008, 08:01 PM


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Thanks Rose, I sure agree. I think times back then were so different and restrictive for women. The names or terms were pretty derogatory. I'm still amazed that the women were able to buy cars in their names!

I can't help but wonder if the press continued using the terms as a put down? Or was it just the way things were then? huh.gif



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Christine M
Posted: Jun 4 2008, 08:40 PM


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I agree the names/terms are derogatory and I can understand why she made the request not to be called a moll. These women were judged by who they ran with, the way they dressed, and their outspokenness

and another thought ~

This was after the 1920s, the era of the flapper, Margaret Sanger pushed birth control for women, Amelia Earhart, first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic, then there were actresses like Marlene Deitrich, Bette Davis, Greta Garbo. I believe the women wanted to emulate them. They didn't want to be grouped with Bonnie Parker.



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If there's any message to my work, it is ultimately that it's OK to be different, that it's good to be different, that we should question ourselves before we pass judgment on someone who looks different, behaves different, talks different, is a different color. JD

Rose Sparrow
Posted: Jun 4 2008, 08:41 PM


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QUOTE (Karen @ Jun 4 2008, 08:01 PM)
I can't help but wonder if the press continued using the terms as a put down? Or was it just the way things were then? huh.gif

IMO, it was definitely a put down.
Implying that none of these women were respectable or had a decent bone in their bodies.
How could they! LOL

But I do think that some people back then, both men and women, were fascinated/curious about these girls and exactly what type of life they actually led with these men.
Kind of like we are now! rolleyes.gif


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nurseanne8
Posted: Jun 4 2008, 08:48 PM


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I think that the terms were reflective of the 1920-1930's era when women were second class citizens and "unmarried" women who had intimate relationships with men rated even lower in the strata of society. The word that is the most insulting to me is when " girls" is used to refer to grown women-like grown women giggle and act silly much like young school girls on the playground. The word "paramour" sounds elegant to me and brings to mind a mistress that has been able to make a shrewd financial arrangement with her lover. The introduction of DCUM states that the term "moll" first was used to refer to a female pickpocket and later evolved to mean the women who associated and lived with gangsters and the word does fit their lifestyle of crime. Bottom line the terms girls, molls, and paramour sound a lot better than J.H. Hoover's term "disease-ridden harlots" those are fight'in words in my vocabulary. angry.gif Anne r
Christine M
Posted: Jun 4 2008, 08:53 PM


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I must say Anne r, you are right on there!! thumbsup.gif I like the way you summed it up!! claphands.gif


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If there's any message to my work, it is ultimately that it's OK to be different, that it's good to be different, that we should question ourselves before we pass judgment on someone who looks different, behaves different, talks different, is a different color. JD

Karen
Posted: Jun 4 2008, 09:20 PM


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QUOTE (Christine M @ Jun 4 2008, 09:40 PM)
I agree the names/terms are derogatory and I can understand why she made the request not to be called a moll. These women were judged by who they ran with, the way they dressed, and their outspokenness

and another thought ~

This was after the 1920s, the era of the flapper, Margaret Sanger pushed birth control for women, Amelia Earhart, first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic, then there were actresses like Marlene Deitrich, Bette Davis, Greta Garbo. I believe the women wanted to emulate them. They didn't want to be grouped with Bonnie Parker.

Good points Christine! Distancing themselves from Bonnie Parker was an important thing then.


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Karen
Posted: Jun 4 2008, 09:23 PM


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QUOTE (Christine M @ Jun 4 2008, 09:53 PM)
I must say Anne r, you are right on there!! thumbsup.gif I like the way you summed it up!! claphands.gif

Ditto that! thumbsup.gif

And Rose, it is amazing that after all these years we ARE still curious about the "why" behind these women.


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nurseanne8
Posted: Jun 4 2008, 09:47 PM


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The "why" behind any woman's relationship with a man be it in the 1930's or 2008 is what keeps conservations between women interesting and seems to be the basis for either harmonious or jealous relationships between women in my opinion. smile.gif Anne r
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