Iconic young adult fiction writer Judy Blume turned 80 on Monday, and to mark the occasion, she spoke to NPR’s Racherl Martin about her storied career. Among the subjects Blume touched on was #MeToo — and what she perceives as a generational gap within the groundbreaking movement.
Blume was among the protesters who converged on Washington last year to take part in the Women’s March, and she told NPR that she identifies as a feminist. But Blume also believes that women of her age have a different perspective on how we should view the work of creative people who are accused of sexual misconduct.
“That doesn’t mean that women of my generation can’t support the #MeToo movement,” Blume said. “Where we may differ is, ‘Is it OK to enjoy the art of someone who we now know may have been abusive to women?’ To me, the answer is yes, I can. And I don’t want museums to take away art because we now know that that artist from a different era may have been abusive to women.” She also noted that she “will continue to see Woody Allen movies because I’m very interested in Woody Allen the filmmaker.”
When asked if she plans to update any of her books to align with the new era ushered in by #MeToo, Blume said she is happy to let her much-loved characters be. “I don’t want to rewrite anything,” she said. “My characters are who they are. For years, people have written and asked me to let Margaret [of the novel Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret] go through menopause. And it’s like, ‘Hey guys! Margaret is 12 and she is going to stay 12. That’s who she is.’ No, I don’t want to rewrite any of them.”
Read or listen to the full interview at NPR.