Now we’ve calmed down a little – here’s some post-Royal Wedding analysis

Posted on May 3, 2011

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Now that we (the UK) have calmed down a little following the excitement and furore surrounding the Royal Wedding, look back at the coverage given to the event by many in the media and tell me we haven’t stepped back in time 100 years.

The Royal Wedding at Buckingham Palace on 29th April 2011: The Bride and Groom, TRH The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in the Throne Room. Picture Credit: Photograph by Hugo Burnand

I do not mean in a good way – I’ve got a bone to pick with the coverage and general opinions expressed by many pro-Royals around the country.

Before I start I would like to emphasise that I enjoyed the ceremony greatly and thought that Westminster Abbey looked glorious and the service was conducted beautifully.

But what played on my mind at the time was the opinions expressed by many onlookers which, directed towards any other wedding, would have made them a chauvinist.

I’m referring to the fact that most of the comments that I saw and heard about Kate referred to her as being lucky, that she was living the princess dream that every little girl dreams of.

And if they weren’t suggesting that she was lucky to have such a man, comments were about how she looked, how she had lost weight and how she compared to Diana.

Is it really OK to spend quite so much air-time discussing a woman like a prize animal?

It was as if the world had stopped recognising this as the matrimony between a woman and a man who love each other – turning into a future king and his trophy he had plucked from the peasants around him.

If you heard someone banging on about how fortunate a woman is to be marrying their husband to be you would quite rightly consider that person pretty sexist.

Why is it that we became so fixated by this viewpoint? Alice Miles of the New Statesman explains why Kate brings out the worst in us, suggesting that: ‘If there is one person I wouldn’t want to be in 2011, it is Kate Middleton.’

Prince William’s view

Not for one minute do I think that Prince William believes she is very lucky to have him, quite the opposite in fact. He has expressed in interviews the type of healthy attitude that is the result of any working relationship in which people are truly in love.

According to The Mail Online:

Prince William and his wife Kate Middleton, who has been given the title of The Duchess of Cambridge, wave to the crowds from the balcony of Buckingham Palace, London, following their wedding at Westminster Abbey.

‘Prince William declared his new wife ‘my rock’ in an emotional speech given to guests at the evening reception following Friday’s wedding.’

‘In what was a tribute to the normality and security Kate provides him, William’s intimate words in front of 300 gathered family and friends revealed just how indebted he is to Kate for her support.’

I mean, lets be fair, it is not as if Kate jumped impatiently at the chance to marry and become the future King’s wife. Certainly it is unfair for her and her sister to be labelled the ‘Wisteria Sisters’ alluding to their ability as ‘social climbers’ (read more about that on The Daily Mail)

Timeline

Kate Middleton, who has been given the title of The Duchess of Cambridge, makes her way in the royal procession to Buckingham Palace after her wedding to Price William at Westminster Abbey.

They first began their relationship in 2004 and have had a rough time of it in patches, including a brief break-up in 2007. There is a full timeline posted on The Telegraph, but here are a few key moments in their history so far.

September 2001: Prince William and Kate Middleton meet at St Andrews University where they are studying art history.

Kate persuades William to stay at university after he admits finding it difficult to settle. He later switches to a geography course.

September 2002: They move into a student house with two other friends including former Etonian Fergus Boyd.

March 2004: William and Kate’s relationship is revelaed after they are pictured skiing in Klosters together. Clarence House do not deny they are dating. On the same holiday, William is reported to have said: “I don’t want to get married until I’m at least 28 or maybe 30.”

December 2006: Kate makes her most significant appearance to date as she turns up to watch William graduate as an Army officer at Sandhurst.

April 14, 2007: William and Kate are confirmed to have split.

June 2007: The couple are reported to be dating again

June 2010: The couple move in together into a cottage in north Wales close to Prince William’s RAF Valley in Angelsey.

October 2010: The couple become engaged after William proposes while on holiday in Kenya.

So, as you can see – it has hardly been a decision taken lightly.

The Prince has done everything he can to try to appeal to the country as being down to earth, in contact with the needs of a modern Britain. The least we can do is view their relationship and marriage as having all the same functions and realities as a modern marriage.

It may dispel this illusion of fantasy or Disney even, but they are lucky to have found each other. It could even be said that William is more fortunate to have been able to find someone who he truly loves within the confines of the constrained socialising he has been allowed to conduct himself in.

Read more musings about the Royal Wedding, including suggestions for what is inside the Queen’s handbag on In-Sight-Out.

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Posted in: News, The Odd Box