Winner of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society’s Books for a Better Life Award
The image of girls and girlhood that is being packaged and sold to your daughter isn't pretty in pink. It is stereotypical, demeaning, limiting, and alarming. Girl Power has been co-opted by marketers of music, fashion, books, and television to mean the power to shop and attract boys. Girls are besieged by images in the media that encourage them to pursue accessories over academics; sex appeal over sports; fashion over friendship. These stereotypes are everywhere, from Disney movies to hip-hop lyrics, Nickelodeon cartoons to Seventeen magazine.
Little girls are portrayed as "perfect little angels," sometimes with a sassy twist; elementary school-age girls are boy-crazy "tweens," ready to buy into a version of mini-teendom that eclipses the wonderful years of childhood that truly belong to them; middle-school girls are cast as full-fledged teenagers, or at least teenage wannabes, eager to conform to that CosmoGIRL! lifestyle. And high school girls? They are sold an image of the sexually free model-diva-rock-star that the younger girls are supposed to look up to.
Packaging Girlhood exposes these stereotypes and the very limited choices presented to girls of who or what they can be. Sharon Lamb and Lyn Mikel Brown give guidance on how to talk with young girls about these negative images and provides with the tools and information needed to help girls make more positive choices about the way they define themselves in the real world.