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Is Bridget Jones really one of the seven most influential women of the past 70 years?

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Time Out Film

She introduced us to smug marrieds, fuckwit boyfriends and the fear of dying alone while being eaten by Alsatians. But is Bridget Jones honestly as influential and important as Britain’s first female prime minister? Yes, says BBC Radio 4’s Women’s Hour, which has put she of the big pants on a list of the seven women who made the most impact on women’s lives over the past 70 years.

The panel chair, journalist Emma Barnett, defended the choice of Bridge, who is the only fictional woman on the list: ‘I think we forget that Bridget Jones is our "Sex and the City",’ she told the Guardian. ‘She’s our flawed heroine, the character which enabled women who didn’t have children, didn’t have the perfect life, to laugh at themselves and feel unashamed of who they are.’

Bridget Jones creator Helen Fielding called it a ‘tremendous honour’, adding, ‘I hope it doesn't mean everyone's going to binge drink and eat Milk Tray late at night.

‘I also hope there was something rather more profound going on. There's something in Bridget's nature which is very British which is ultimately quite decent, quite kind, quite resilient, not judgmental.’

Britain's first female prime minister Margaret Thatcher topped the list, which includes feminist Germaine Greer and Helen Brook, who founded the Brook Advisory Centres providing contraception to young women. The panel of seven judges included ‘Suffragette’ scriptwriter Abi Morgan and businesswoman Karren Brady.

Bridget has been called out for being a bad feminist – all that obsessing over being thin and getting a man. But the release of ‘Bridget Jones’s Baby’ earlier this year showed us a whole new side: funnier, wittier and happier with herself.

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