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I Am an Emotional Creature: The Secret Life of Girls Around the World Paperback – January 25, 2011

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Written in the same format as her watershed work, The Vagina Monologues (1998), Ensler’s latest mélange of dramatic voices continues the mission of her philanthropic organization, V-Day, to stop violence against women. Published for adults but aimed straight at young adults, this volume provides a searing look at the inner lives of young females today in entries that explore sex, violence, love, body image, materialism, identity, family, friends, and the future. “You Tell Me How to Be a Girl in 2010” begins the collection with a furious catalog of the state of a girl’s world, from global war to everyday heartbreak: “Girls younger than me are giving blowjobs / in homeroom / and they don’t even know it’s sex.” The sobering international voices include child soldiers, young sex slaves, girls whose boyfriends hit them, and girls who starve and cut themselves. Other girls speak of honesty, tenderness, freedom, accomplishment, self-love, and defiance: “My short skirt / is not an invitation / a provocation / an indication / that I want it / or give it / or that I hook. . . . My short skirt is happiness. / I can feel myself on the ground. I am here. And I am hot.” With moving forewords by Carol Gilligan and Ensler, this powerful title, interspersed with shocking “Girl Facts,” serves as a potent call to girls to honor their emotions and to readers of all ages to uphold human rights at every level, from the boardroom to the bedroom. --Gillian Engberg --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

“A searing look at the inner lives of young females . . . a potent call to girls to honor their emotions and to readers of all ages to uphold human rights at every level, from the boardroom to the bedroom.”—Booklist (starred review)

“Powerful.”—Los Angeles Times

“Leave it to Eve Ensler to get it right.”—Bust magazine
 
“The emotions are raw and intense. [Ensler’s] writing is very conversational, which gives the stories power.”—The Roanoke Times
 
“Provocative . . . inspiring.”—Associated Press
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Villard; Reprint edition (January 25, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0812970160
  • ISBN-13: 978-0812970166
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.5 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #50,404 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

Eve Ensler is a Tony award winning playwright, performer and activist. She is the author of international phenomenon, The Vagina Monologues, which won an Obie and has been published in 48 languages and performed in over 140 countries. Eve wrote the New York Times Bestseller, I Am An Emotional Creature: The Secret Life Of Girls Around The World. She then adapted it as a play which ran to critical acclaim in South Africa, Paris, Berkeley and Off-Broadway. She is the founder of V-Day, the global movement to end violence against women and girls, which has raised over 100 million dollars for grassroots organizations around the world. On V-Day's 15th Anniversary, it launched it's most ambitious campaign One Billion Rising which inspired one billion people in 207 countries to Strike Dance and Rise on Feb 14, 2013 for the freedom, safety and equality of women. With the women of Congo, V-Day opened and supports City of Joy in Bukavu, Congo, a revolutionary center where survivors of gender violence Turn Their Pain to Power. Eve starred in the HBO version of The Vagina Monologues. Her play Here was filmed live by Sky Television in London, UK. She co-produced the documentary What I Want My Words to You which won the Freedom of Expression Award at Sundance. Her other plays include Necessary Targets, The Treatment and The Good Body, which she performed on Broadway, followed by a national tour. In 2006, Eve released her book, Insecure At Last: A Political Memoir, and co-edited A Memory, A Monologue, A Rant and a Prayer. Her newest book In The Body of the World will be published by Holt. Ensler lives in the world.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By The Compulsive Reader VINE VOICE on February 16, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I Am an Emotional Creature is, quite simply, a book of diverse monologues, told by young girls all around the world. Whether these girls' stories are familiar or foreign to you, they all are confronting the complex issue of defining oneself in a world full of contradictions, where girls are told they must be polite and pretty and perfect to fit in, yet are encouraged to be strong and independent and to dream big at the same time. Every girl's story is unique and equally jarring, from the simple confrontation of peer pressure in the average high school to tales of girls sold for sex miles and oceans away. This book is filled with girl stories: those forced to undergo unwanted plastic surgery, working in far-away factories making Barbies, pregnant girls, anorexic girls, and girls just talking. Each story is surprising and alive.

I Am an Emotional Creature is a hybrid in the style in which it is told. Though most of the monologues are straightforward prose, poems and scripts are sprinkled throughout these fictional stories, made even more realistic by the many "Girl Facts" interspersed throughout the book. Ensler captures the essence of being a girl and being human without being trite or even touching on clichés, and the result is a bold, incisive, emotional, and achingly real testament to teen girls and their power and verve. This book will not only make you think, but also quite possibly change the way you think about teen girls today.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Katie on February 15, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I LOVE Eve Ensler and The Vagina Monologues and have very high expectations for her work. She did not disappoint! Even though this book is intended for teenage girls, women of all ages will love it, and will read it over and over again. Read either as an entire book or as pieces, it's incredibly moving and motivational. I would definitely recommend buying it and copies for all the women in your life!
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26 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Anne Caroline Drake on February 9, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Eve Ensler is launching her V-Girl Movement with this book. It will be accompanied by a curriculum created by her V-Girls Advisory Circle.

The essence of the book is in the "About" section of her new [...] web site. (Be sure to type "org" or you'll find yourself in misogyny-land!)

I AM AN EMOTIONAL CREATURE is the teenage version of Ms. Ensler's iconic THE VAGINA MONOLOGUES. It is classic Eve Ensler: extreme, dramatic, alive, emotional, and radical.

Her intent is to end the global mandate that conditions girls to please rather than to embrace their authentic voices. She wants us all to "love love love being a girl."

This book will be a great gift for any girl ~ no matter her age ~ who wants to unleash her feminine power and find her authentic voice.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Michael Dorenzo on April 23, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I ordered this book after listening to Ms. Engler's talk and performance of the piece "I am an emotional creature" on TED Talks via You Tube. It was sent to me by one of my "girls" on the east coast who works at Cornell University and who sent it to all her girls, both female and male. I quickly sent it to all of mine.

I have mentored girls through my work at UCSC and in my community and family and it always brings me such joy to be around them...Hearing her perform the poem from which the book gets its name simply rocked my world. I couldn't wait to order the book.

It addresses in the most direct way the girl in all of us...that most precious of resources that we tend to abandon, repress, abuse and disown in so many ways and in accordance with so many cultural directives. It is a beautiful articulation of the wild, creative, dangerous, indomitable feminine--both an affirmation and a call to action.

I'd like to give the book to all the girls I know. I Am an Emotional Creature: The Secret Life of Girls Around the World
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Michael A. Males on January 5, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Ensler's introduction offers encouraging hope that she--unlike popular authors like Mary Pipher, Jean Twenge, James Garbarino, Rosalind Wiseman, et al--might actually be capable of seeing individuality, diversity, and strengths in 15 million teenage girls in the United States (and half a billion worldwide) instead of just a mass of misery and mayhem. Could Ensler be fomenting revolution?

Sure, Ensler finds it "disturbing" that 74% of girls "say you are under pressure to please everyone" (actually, the 2006 Girls, Inc., survey found girls weren't talking about themselves, but speculating about girls in general, a standard survey trick to inflate numbers). But Ensler surely must realize it doesn't matter what teens say; if girls said they DIDN'T care about pleasing others, howls of narcissism and self-absorption would have followed. "You scare us," Ensler tells teenagers, (pp. xxiii-iv), which leads emotionally stunted grownups to teach young people "to make yourselves feel less so everyone feels more comfortable... to behave... not to stand out" (pp. xxvi).

Refreshing, right? Not for long. Ensler follows with "You tell me how to be a girl in 2010," which begins with a hackneyed (but at least apt) attack on the sins of corporatized America and, unexpectedly, culminates in a crescendo of ugly clichés demeaning modern youth. "What happened to teenagers rebelling/instead of buying and selling?/What happened to teenagers kissing/instead of blogging and dissing?/What happened to teenagers marching and refusing/instead of exploiting and using?"

This is worse than bad rhyming; it's transparent snobbery. Ensler flatters herself and older generations for alleged loving, respectful anti-conformist teenhoods (really?
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