Princess Michael’s “Diana was uneducated” and “older royals are boring” quotes are actually completely true

Princess Michael is still pimping her book (The Queen of Four Kingdoms), this time on Canadian TV.  In the interview Princess Michael talked about Princess Diana and mentioned William and Kate and the younger royal generation.  Her comments have made headlines and people are harping on key phrases without giving the context—because context is boring when a few words can cause an outrage and get people to click on articles.  I understand the whole salacious headline to get readership/clicks, but it bugs the crap out of me because people latch onto those headlines and make a big deal out of it when if you read the quotes in context they aren’t that bad (and that goes for a lot of things, not just these Princess Michael quotes).  Her comments that are making headlines are about Princess Diana being uneducated and how the older royals are boring.  Ugh, I hate to defend her (since I was kind of called out for defending her in the last Princess Michael post I made), but her quotes aren’t really that salacious; they are pretty accurate when read in context.

Let’s start with the Diana quotes.  The bit getting play is the comment about Diana being uneducated, but it isn’t so much shade as it is explaining that Diana’s lack of education (and lack of a mother growing up, because Princess Michael mentions that too) made it harder for her to cope with the sudden adulation she received when she married Charles.  The quote is:  “Like probably many people of little education who find themselves… suddenly lauded by the whole world, it is very difficult if you have not had a mother bringing you up who was quite stern and strict.  She did not have a mother bring her up and she did not have much education, so it is much harder to cope with eulogy.”

Let’s get something straight:  Diana WAS uneducated.  Diana failed her O-levels twice and didn’t have any education past high school.  Calling a spade a spade isn’t bad.  I realize that Saint Diana is still beloved by a lot of people, but she was uneducated and saying that out loud isn’t wrong.  But it’s not even like Princess Michael was calling Diana out for lacking formal education, she was merely stating that lacking a formal education and lacking a strong mother growing up made it difficult for Diana to cope with the fame and praise and stress that came with her marriage.

On the subject of William and Kate, Princess Michael said:  “Of course we’re thrilled to have a beautiful young married couple with a baby.  Let’s hope there are more marriages soon because I think to have that young generation is terribly good for the people.  The people love to see happy young people and I think the older generation are a bit boring for most people.”  The part that is getting play is the “the older generation are… boring” part.

Here’s why her quote is perfectly innocuous:  She has the “for most people” qualification at the end of the sentence that the papers are leaving out for effect.

You know what, our culture is OBSESSED with youth and values youth above all else (especially for females).  So yes, for most people who value youth, the older royals would be boring because the youth-obsessed want pretty young women who wear fancy dresses and want hot young men who, well, are hot.  For a culture that values youth, saying that the older generation is a bit boring for most people is completely true.

Back when Diana married Charles, the public was pushing for the Queen to abdicate in favor of Charles, because they wanted a young, sexy couple to be King and Queen.  It’s the same thing with the public pushing for Will and Kate to be next in line over Charles—they are young and sexy and Charles is not.

It’s kind of ridiculous/hilarious that people are “outraged” about Princess Michael’s comments.  Lady Colin Campbell called the comments, “rubbish”.  And Ashley Walton—who wrote a book about Philip—said, “Philip is 93 this year but he is anything but boring.  In many ways he and the Queen are far more interesting than the younger royals because of what they have experienced in their long lives.”

What these people fail to realize is that (in my opinion) Princess Michael understands the youth-obsessed culture and is merely commenting based on that.  To the general public, Philip is a boring old man.  The general public doesn’t give a sh-t what Philip does; they only care about what the young royals do—and not all of the young royals, mainly just Will, Kate and Harry.  Will, Kate and Harry sell papers, Philip doesn’t.  Princess Michael seems to understand this in a way that royal biographers don’t.

I wasn’t even going to comment on this, but felt like I had to because the headline is completely misleading on purpose and Princess Michael’s quotes are pretty spot on.  Part of my purpose for this blog is calling out the press for their ridiculous reporting.  Usually that ridiculous reporting centers around the inaccurate sycophancy of Kate Middleton, but the reporting surrounding these Princess Michael quotes is so skewed I had to say something about it.

6 Comments on Princess Michael’s “Diana was uneducated” and “older royals are boring” quotes are actually completely true

  1. Nancy
    January 27, 2014 at 9:29 am (5 years ago)

    I am sorry but I disagree that Diana was uneducated just because she failed her O levels, or that her mother was not around when she was growing up. A lot of people will be in a similar situation, but that does not make them uneducated either. I had a wonderful boss who didn’t even take O levels, and had father around when he was growing up, but he headed up a world wide corporation, travelled the world, spoke at conferences – so, he was uneducated? I think not I also disagree that old people are boring, they do in fact have a lot to offer the world and the younger generation. You sound very much like a princess michael adoring fan, standing her corner for the sad book she wrote. She sounds more like a bitter has been to me. I am usually a fan of your work, but this particular is absolute twaddle.

    • katemiddletonreview
      January 28, 2014 at 1:33 am (5 years ago)

      Diana had no formal higher education, and she did not pursue education on her own, or become some major business person. There are plenty of CEOs with no formal higher education, but they learned their craft on their own and worked hard to get where they are (like your boss, and good for him for achieving that). Diana didn’t do any of that. She became a princess at 20 and, yes, became very involved with charity, but she didn’t learn some business or skill and apply it to her career (other than connecting with people). Diana was great at what she did, but she wasn’t super intelligent. I know people with no formal higher education who I would never call uneducated, because they spend time everyday learning new things about their chosen craft. I’m sorry that I offended you, Nancy. Like BitchyShoes pointed out below, if we want to get technical, then Diana wasn’t uneducated since she had some education. There are levels, I guess, to the term “uneducated” (when we veer from the textbook definition), and I suppose that term means different levels to different people depending on whom one is discussing. I should have been more clear in how I was using that term as to not offend people.

      Re growing up without a mother affects blah blah blah… yes totally take offense to that. In fact (I thought about mentioning this in my original post but then it was already getting too long so I didn’t), I think those comments about her mother should be getting more play since those comments are more offensive (in my opinion). But those comments wouldn’t make for an interesting headline and the “uneducated” line does.

      As for the old people are boring thing… like I said in my post, for the majority of the population who are buying magazines and whatnot who are obsessed with youth, old people are boring. Old royals don’t sell magazines. This is evident by how many articles on William, Kate and Harry there are compared to Princess Anne who works so much harder than the three of them combined (and has more personality, even though she comes off very abrasive). I never said old people don’t have a lot to offer, I said the youth-obsessed would find old royals boring. In fact, reading over it again, I don’t think I ever gave my own opinion, all I said was that our culture is obsessed with youth. Like I said about Princess Michael’s qualification of “for most people”, I have the qualification of “for the youth-obsessed”. For the youth-obsessed, old royals are boring, but that doesn’t mean old royals are boring to everyone. I feel like this is a similar analogy, if not 100% perfect: All elephants are grey, but not all grey things are elephants. The youth-obsessed finds old royals boring, but that doesn’t mean all old royals are boring.

      I would love more coverage of other royals, but they don’t sell papers or garner a ton of clicks. It’s the same with most women in Hollywood (unless you’re Meryl Streep or Emma Thompson or similar caliber of amazing actress), once women become older they no longer get a ton of acting roles, because the studios want young, hot girls because those are the people they think the public wants to see. It’s unfortunate, but it is what it is. If the public actually supported the older royals by buying papers and clicking/commenting on articles, then there would be more articles about older royals. Now, I may be giving Princess Michael more credit than she deserves, but I took her “old royals are boring” thing as a comment on the youth-obsessed culture. She may not have meant it that way, I don’t know. I understand the youth-obsessed culture and the business side of playing into it, but that doesn’t mean I agree with it.

      I’m sorry my comment on that offended you. I actually completely agree with you, I don’t find the older royals boring. And I love hearing older people with more knowledge on a subject I like talk about that subject. The older generation isn’t boring to me, but the older generation doesn’t sell papers to the masses (ie. casual fans who only care about pretty girls and hot guys). I hope you can understand that I wasn’t trying to say that old royals are actually boring, I was merely saying that old royals don’t sell papers the way young royals do, and that there is nothing wrong with saying that, since it is true. Again, I may be giving Princess Michael more credit than she deserves here, but her comment about people liking the younger generation and finding the older generation a bit boring seemed to me to be more about the truth that for the most part the younger generation sells better. But that may be because of my own knowledge and experience rather than whatever she was actually intending. I guess that just goes to show how different people interpret different things differently. Some people took her quotes as an attack on Diana and the older royals, I took it as a comment on Diana’s lack of formal higher education and the youth-obsessed culture.

      As for being a Princess Michael fan… I have literally read two articles about her, the articles I’ve posted about (and they only came to my attention because she mentioned Will and Kate, which I’m sure is why she mentioned them, because she wouldn’t have gotten a ton of play without mentioning them). She may be a bitter asshole, I have no idea. But when I read her quotes I didn’t think they sounded as bad as the headlines were trying to make them sound. I should really stop posting on her, it only gets me into trouble.

      Again, Nancy, I’m sorry that I offended you. I hope I was able to clarify. I did not mean to attack anyone, I was merely stating a different take on her comments from what the papers were selling.

  2. BitchyShoes
    January 27, 2014 at 1:20 pm (5 years ago)

    I just have one teensy quibble. Diana wasn’t uneducated. She did go to school through “high school” but couldn’t go further because she failed her tests. So she wasn’t uneducated, she just didn’t retain anything apparently!

    • katemiddletonreview
      January 28, 2014 at 12:47 am (5 years ago)

      That’s true. She did have some education, but no university education. I guess I should clarify that I meant “uneducated” as in “having no higher education”, rather than having no education at all. That’s my bad.

      Re the “high school” bit, I have no idea what it is officially called in the UK, but I assume the schooling before university in the UK is similar to high school, the schooling before university, in the US.

  3. ann
    January 29, 2014 at 3:34 am (5 years ago)

    it doesnt matter whether she was educated or not, she became a world icon and not because she showed us her body parts (, and she didnt, ) she cared about people, did u know she hugged aids victim when aids just came out and was not scared of getting infected, little was known of aids then, i was in africa by that time and people cried while watching her funeral i was moved, she earned respect , diana will always be remembered and missed dearly!!

  4. Sean
    March 13, 2014 at 8:38 pm (5 years ago)

    Completely agree with your commentary and Princess Michael. Most people in the US only care about William, Katie (especially) baby (especially) and Harry. They barely know who the Princess Royal is, though she does far more public work than the other three combined and really know Charles from being a slightly dotty older man who helped drive Saint Diana to an early grave so he could roll in the hay with Camilla (who I think is MUCH more suitable for him and for being Queen). They know who Prince Andrew is because of Sarah, Duchess of York and all her self-promoting activity in the US. As for Diana, she had vast emotional intelligence but as for book smarts (like most British royals and aristocrats) she was somewhat lacking.