"Men are adapting consciously and also without realizing it," declared actress Meryl Streep at Barnard College on Monday. "They're changing their deepest prejudices to accept and to regard as
normal things that their fathers would have found very very difficult
and their grandfathers would have abhorred. And the door into this
emotional shift is empathy."
Meryl Streep cites her own experiences as examples, comparing how men have reacted to her on-screen characters through the decades. She recalls her submissive role as Linda in Deerhunter (around 5:20): "men my age .. mention that character as their favorite of all I've played." Yet "now," she says, "in a measure of how much the world has changed, the character that most men mention as their favorite is Miranda Priestly," (6:40) the assertive--occasionally terrifying--figure from The Devil Wears Prada.