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Cinderella Ate My Daughter: Dispatches from the Front Lines of the New Girlie-Girl Culture [Hardcover] Hardcover – January 25, 2010


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Product Details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Harper (January 25, 2010)
  • ASIN: B004KR9IFM
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.2 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (163 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #659,239 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Peggy Orenstein is the author of the New York Times bestseller Waiting for Daisy: A Tale of Two Continents, Three Religions, Five Infertility Doctors, an Oscar, an Atomic Bomb, a Romantic Night, and One Woman's Quest to Become a Mother and Schoolgirls: Young Women, Self-Esteem, and the Confidence Gap. A contributing writer to the New York Times Magazine, she has been published in, among others, USA Today; Vogue; Parenting; O, The Oprah Magazine; Salon; and The New Yorker. Orenstein lives in Northern California with her husband and their daughter, Daisy.

Customer Reviews

I found this book to be a very quick, enjoyable read on a fascinating topic.
K. Wilt
"Cinderella Ate My Daughter" validates every fear I've ever had about princess culture and early sexualization of girls.
K.
We are never going to get fathers more involved in parenting unless we write books like this for them too.
Dan Trachtman

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

237 of 254 people found the following review helpful By Bradley Olin VINE VOICE on December 15, 2010
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
First of all, I'm a new father. Of a girl. Naturally I find myself wondering how on earth I am going to raise a confident, considerate and well adjusted girl in these complicated times. I also noticed that sometimes people's eyebrows would raise as they saw me reading this book in public. Trust me. This book is a worthwhile read for mothers AND fathers.

What this book has proven to be is an alarming expose of the numerous pitfalls our culture has created for girls. Orenstein humorously and cuttingly tackles issues such as the marketing schemes of the "disney princess brand", "pink explosion" of products marketed toward girls, the pattern of teen-icon role-models who go from "wholesome" to "whoresome" as they mature (even the seemingly incorruptible Miley Cyrus succumbed to it as she got older). AKA don't pose for Vanity Fair. The book is well researched and makes a compelling case for all parents to be concerned about the future of their daughters.

Orenstein's agenda is liberally slanted with an anti-consumer agenda, and you can tell because there's some obvious HRC/Palin comparisons in the book, but what would you expect from a lady living in Berekely, California? A Santa Cruz resident, myself, I didn't find these insertions bothersome, but to the politically conservative I advice a grain of salt.

At times the narrative seemed to get overly alarmist, raising red flags about things which I personally wouldn't worry very much. I understand why, but parts of the discussion seemed to over-stress the dangers to our nascent daughters. I just don't buy it. Meanwhile, the book offers a great amount of commentary/critique about these challenges, but provides very little of substance in terms of how to address these issues on the parental end.
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398 of 451 people found the following review helpful By Aoife VINE VOICE on December 3, 2010
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Is it just me or are nonfiction books of this type getting shorter and ending in an increasingly abrupt manner? I was startled when I hit the end of this most recent offering from Ms. Orenstein; with a good pinch of pages left I thought I had just reached the end of a chapter, only to see the rest of the bulk consisted merely of acknowledgements, notes, and so forth.

This sudden drop off only adds to my list of frustrations with this interesting, well-intentioned, yet flawed book. As the mother of three young daughters, I was at once intrigued and skeptical when I picked up the book, which claims to tell us poor befuddled mothers what to make of the supposedly new culture of "girlie girl." The author immediately strikes a very bloggy, up-to-the-minute tone, which can be fun to read but also frustratingly limited. It is odd to pick up an actual physical book and see snarky snappiness and reference after reference to things I have seen online, but have never encountered in real life. Is there truly no world outside the internet now?

It also has the downfall so common to these social critique tomes, in that the author employs what I like to call the "me and my playgroup" method of research. Rather than delving into true social scientific research even in a casual way, rather than expanding her explorations into unfamiliar neighborhoods or more solidly limiting the terms of the inquiry to well-heeled coastal progressive communities, the author lazily lopes around the park on the corner and runs back to report what she has seen there. A lot of assumptions fill in the gap. For instance, she says that since the "princess thing" is so big "even" where she lives (liberal Berkeley) it "must" be even worse elsewhere. Well no, not necessarily.
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91 of 108 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer TOP 500 REVIEWER on January 24, 2011
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Cinderella Ate My Daughter / 978-0-061-71152-7

For people interested in gender politics and how they play out in advertising aimed at young girls in America, this book is an absolute delight to read. Author Orenstein examines everything from Disney Princess merchandise, American Girls dolls, the "Twilight" phenomena, Miley Cyrus (and all the "innocent-but-sexy" singers and actresses that have come before her, and will come after her yet), pageant culture, and Facebook - all through the dual lens of her own experiences as a mother and her own research as a journalist.

"Cinderella Ate My Daughter" is wonderfully written - both informative and interesting. The author has a wonderful sense of when to intersperse daily anecdotes from her own life into the meticulous studies she references and the experts she quotes. This is anything but a "fluff" book - there's so much information compiled here and it's presented in an imminently easy-to-digest format. Looking back on this book, dozens of fascinating facts leap to my mind - such as the evidence that dolls were in low vogue among girls in the late 1800's, until President Roosevelt warned the country against declining Anglo-Saxon birth rates and suddenly the race was on to prepare (certain kinds of) girls to be 'good American mothers'. Then there's the chapter about mixed-gender play and how to understand the difference between boys and girls playing WITH each other and them playing NEAR each other (and how to encourage the latter to blossom into the former). Especially impressive in this book is how the author always tries to give the opposition a fair say, even while making it clear where she falls on the spectrum - everything comes across as highly informative and extremely fair-spoken.
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