It’s time for a Sadie Hawkins dance


The suffragette movement empowered women, and adding a Sadie Hawkins dance at school could help do the same thing.

Going to a high school dance – regardless of whether the theme is the roaring twenties – is like getting in a time machine. Homecoming and prom both allow students to become nostalgic over impractical ball gowns, corsages, cotillion etiquette and carriage-like limos. At the same time, the dances also often inadvertently preserve old-fashioned and gendered courtship rituals that stress out both sexes. Many students think bringing a Sadie Hawkins dance back to St. Pius X is the first step to leave these outdated customs in the past.

Originally concocted in the 1930’s comic Li’l Abner, the Sadie Hawkins custom is a less formal dance where the girls are wholly responsible for asking their dates to go with them, contrary to the typical social expectations of more formal dances.

“The general socially acceptable thing for HoCo is that the boy is supposed to ask you. It’s not required, but it would be taboo for a girl to ask a boy,” said junior Anna Galvin, a seasoned Homecoming veteran.

These toxic expectations often leave young women feeling powerless during the whole process.

“Waiting to see if anyone would ever think of asking me and watching other people get asked is definitely nerve-wracking,” junior Vy Nguyen said. “Girls are only supposed to get asked and don’t have any control over who they want to go with either unless you want to be that girl that says no.”

Female students aren’t the only ones dissatisfied with the current process. Male students such as junior Keenan Finneran feel that constantly being forced to make decisions is equally exhausting.

“I don’t know. As a guy, it’s nice to have that social pressure off. Like having to ask someone to prom or HoCo is pretty stressful sometimes. So it’d be cool to get a break and experience the other side of it,” Finneran said.

Like many other cultural inequalities, the expectation of men asking out women on a date will probably be around for a while, but by making Sadie a reality, we could begin to balance the scales.

So why haven’t we been pushing our class representatives for Sadie? Senior Georgia Brieske thought one of the main objections to Sadie Hawkins from other students could be “that girls would freak out or fight” if put into a position where they had to ask boys.

While logistical concerns about putting on Sadie are certainly legitimate, claiming that young women aren’t mature enough to handle the responsibility – when boys are – is purely sexist. It portrays them as catty and hysterical.

We wouldn’t ask whether men were too dramatic to handle a dance. We’d ask when the dance was. We’d ask how much it would cost. We’d ask how to make it a reality.