My Little Girl

In my post Thank Heaven For Little Girls I stressed the symbolic nature of using this song to accompany a stage dance between mature men and little girls. Now I found another video of a stage dance of adult men with little girls, but this one is much more romantic, the men lift the girls up, take them in their arms, and kiss them several times (at 1’05”, 3’00” and 3’29”):

The song is “My Little Girl”, performed by American country music singer Tim McGraw and composed by Tom Douglas and himself. Released on August 7th, 2006, it reached the top three on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. The lyrics can be found in MetroLyrics, LyricWikia and AZLyrics. The singer addresses his daughter, telling her “how much I love you,” calling her “beautiful baby,” but though she is growing up, “to me you know you’ll always be my little girl.” Finally “someday some boy will come and ask me for your hand” (how old-fashioned! can’t she decide herself?), but the father will be reluctant to give his little girl to another man: “but between you and me, he won’t be good enough.”

The above video is titled “Daddy Daughter Dance – My Little Girl,” but I don’t know if the men are really the fathers of the girls with whom they are dancing. Many other artists have sung in a mellow and sugary way the love of a father for his daughter, and YouTube is replete with videos of fathers dancing with their daughters. But nowhere does one find a similar portrayal of the relation between father and son, or between mother and children of either gender. One could say that men are sexist, that they treat their daughters as full of beauty and charm, while their sons are rather endowed with skills. However, maybe this infatuation for father-daughter love hides something secret that could never be acknowledged.

Pigtails in Paint has devoted an article to the American cartoonist Robert Crumb, known for his crude sketches, where women are often portrayed as sex objects. Apparently, he did not fancy romantic love, but there was an exception:

The only woman I’ve ever been in love with is Sophie basically, my darling daughter.

Terry Zwigoff – Crumb (1994)

Terry Zwigoff – Crumb (1994)

The article adds:

Not to oversimplify, but it is human nature to love one’s children regardless, but Crumb also has a son Jesse by a first marriage, and even though it is fair to say that they are close, there is not that feeling of warm intimacy one might expect. However, after Sophie was born something changed and he knew it.

So, many men crave for a romantic love affair with a little girl, but outside of family this would cause the worst scandal. Hence they indulge in that passion with their daughter, if they are lucky to have one. But this is not the best solution, as romantic love requires free choice, while kinship is never free (a girl can never choose her father). Thus it would be more honest and courageous for male artists to write and perform songs about a “little girl,” but without any possessive “my”.

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