When Selia claims that royalty is something you've got to earn, it sends a shock down Ani's spine. How dare she—a lady in waiting—tell Ani about how to be a ruler when Ani is her princess? It's a pretty shocking moment as far as The Goose Girl is concerned, but is Selia right? Should royalty or leaders have to earn their places?
The novel might seem to have a different set of social rules than we have today, but we can't help but notice that there is still plenty of hierarchy in our world. Instead of being monarchical, though, it's based on social class, race, education, and more. Hmm… maybe our world isn't all that different after all.
Questions About Society and Class
- Is Selia right that royalty should be earned and not expected? Why or why not? What happens in the book that supports your argument?
- How does Ani change after learning Selia's opinion about royalty? Does she earn her royal title back, or is it given to her simply because she's the real princess?
- Can anyone just become a princess in the book? Why or why not?
- How does the book comment on social class? Do you think you are judged because of where you are from, or who your parents are?
Chew on This
Selia's harsh dose of reality helps Ani learn how to think and behave like a ruler instead of a spoiled brat.
Ani grows up a lot, but the only reason she becomes princess at the end is because of the family she's been born into—so in the end, royalty is a birth right, not earned.