Emma Watson's speech to the UN, delivered with such grace beyond her tender years, is filled with laudable sentiments and noble intentions. She beautifully describes a theoretical ideal of women and men treating each other with the deepest respect and reverence, a far cry from her experience thus far in her short life of being demeaned as bossy, sexualised and not taken seriously.
Her faltering, child-like voice and couture double breasted men's suit jacket (admittedly in shiny ivory and perfectly tailored) tell a different story to what she is saying. She wants women to be taken seriously and yet her impression of what a woman is is not based on who she is, but what she thinks she is supposed to be. The mismatch between her projection and the content of her words undermine the very authority she talks about wanting and not having.
How much more powerful the impact of this occasion might be if she had perhaps started like this:
"Look at me, here I am a young woman just starting out on my life, here because I am famous for playing at being a girl growing up who isn't me, dressed up in these designer clothes which I choose because they appeared to me this morning to best represent what a woman is, and yet I feel so uncomfortable in them, and talking to you about something I dream about, something that I see as the only way forward for humans to live together in peace and harmony: for men and women to treat each other with respect for who they are not for what they do.
"The honest truth is though that I don't have a clue what it is to be a woman. I look around and I don't see any role models of women who inspire me to want to be me, to want to be a woman in my own right. Right now, I feel as if I am being asked to play another role but no one can tell me how to do it. Hermione, my alter ego of Harry Potter fame, might say ""just wave your magic wand"". But I know that life really isn't that easy......