In anticipation of the first book assigned for the Reality Show Book Club’s first book, “Growing up Duggar” coming out on March 4, let’s meet the older Duggar girls and imagine, “What would they be like if they were liberal arts students instead of having their dreams crushed by theit right-wing, fundamentalist weirdo parents?” No Jinger, you can’t move to a city. And you, Jill, nursing? College is for Satan. So let’s start:
Jana Duggar: Jana is the nicest sister. She cries a lot and worries about hurting other people’s feelings, mostly by just being alive. If she just tried harder, there would be no pain in the world.
School of Choice: Mount Holyoke
Major: Psychology—”I just want to help people and being a therapist is like going to school for talking about your feelings. Narrative theories just speak to me. The most radical thing in the world is just to hear each other without judgement.”
Hobbies and Activities: Helping people, watching movies (favorite film: The Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind), volunteering as a peer advisor, cats, cheese, fangirling about Hiddles and posting lolcat gifs on her tumblr.
Place in the Gawkerverse: Jezebel. Likes to lurk on Groupthink
Jill Duggar: She is the smartest of all Duggars. Yes including you Josh. Especially you, Josh. You aren’t even the smartest male Duggar. Even John David thinks you are a bit of a douche. She’d like to be a nurse but is a midwife because she become get too financially independent. The only hope for her is some Betty Freidan style freakout.
School of Choice: Yale
Major: Biology—”My goal is to eventually go to Medical School and work with Doctors without Borders but only after I finish with the Peace Corps. And then I’ll become a surgeon and then become surgeon general and maybe build my own house and organize everyone’s sock drawers. Everyone’s. And I’ll shovel their driveways. Get me my shovel.”
Activities and Hobbies: Triathalons, International Conflict Research Group, molecular gastronomy,traveling, mixology, organizing things, cryptozoology, overachievement, binge-watching Breaking Bad, cocaine and stress.
Place in the Gawkerverse: Sploid and i09 when she can.
Jessa Duggar: Notice something about this picture. No, it’s not her fiance, it’s her knees. She is showing knees. That’s a major Duggar no-no. Jessa is the older Duggar girl who I frequently confuse with Jana, until I realize that she doesn’t cry like Jana and lacks any feelings. Now she just spends her life smirking. I’ll call her Smirky.
School of Choice: New York University
Major: Marketing—”It seemed like a good idea at the time.”
Hobbies and Activities: Serial monogamy, her boyfriend, her boyfriend’s friends, Pinterest, watching Archer with her boyfriend, craft beer with her boyfriend, skiing with her boyfriend and unarticulated resentment.
Place in the Gawkerverse: Maybe Gizmodo. She has to check with her boyfriend.
Jinger Duggar: There has long been a website called Free Jinger, because for the audience, she has represented the face of skepticism in the face of the Duggar fundie juggernaut. She likes photography, has expressed a desire to move away, is addicted to caffeine and overall, says more about the bullshittery around her through her facial expressions—especially her looks of disdain—than anyone else.
School of Choice: The Evergreen State College
Major: Film— “I spent a whole afternoon, totally baked, watching German Expressionist silent films and man, I said, ‘I’m going to totally do that shit’. And so I am. And my movies are epic. I mean, I can spend hours just filming grass grow. My friends say it was because of the mescaline but I really think I saw something profound there.”
Hobbies and Activities: Getting high, Burning Man, photography, DIY fashion, coffee, disdain, caffeine, burritos, Xbox, hanging out and flashing lights.
Place in the Gawkerverse: Gawker—she is full of snark for the world.