MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO-TV) — This Sunday, millions of people are expected to tune into Oprah’s interview with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle as they open up about why they left royal life.
So, why are we so fascinated by the Royals?
“I think, as a country, we are fascinated with fairytales and romance in general,” said Dr. Anita Thomas, a psychologist and Chief Academic Officer at St. Catherine University. “It’s a natural extension because that’s the way our storytelling really starts.”
She points out the popularity Disney movies and stories told to children at young ages.
John Watkins, professor of English language and literature at the University of Minnesota, says our interest goes back centuries to when the United States fought to leave British monarchy. “It gives us a wonderful sense that what happened in the 1770s is a good thing,” he said.
When asked why they watch the Royals, people walking through Minneapolis on Thursday afternoon said everything from it gives them a distraction from their own daily lives to their fondness for Meghan Markle to their viewership of Netflix’s show, The Crown.
“For us, the American dream is all about social mobility and being able to have that sense of culture and refinement,” Thomas said. “It is part of the allure as well.”
Of course, there’s the glitz and glamour that comes with celebrity, but Thomas says this goes further than that. Members of the normally tight-lipped Royal Family are speaking out and it’s hard to escape the media coverage. “It allows us to see the in-depth the inner-workings of the family dynamics,” she said. “The more that we see it, the more it fuels our desire, the more our desire is fueled, the more we desire.”