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Girl Land Hardcover – January 12, 2012
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Top Customer Reviews
In aiming to protect girls from a dangerously sexualized culture, Flanagan presents them as dreamy, romantic,interior creatures lacking in agency, sure to be victimized by males that at best can't understand them and at worst want to hurt them. This book is full of similarly sweeping generalizations, the phrases
"every woman I know" and "every girl" crop up with regularity. When she does present real data, in one case she follows it up by stating that Columbia University is not a "go-to source for information on the hearts and minds of evangelical teens". I'd counter that the author is not a go-to source of information on the typical teenage girl- she is writing mostly about her own experiences, or a few girls whose upbringing resembles her own. She is an authority only on her own girlhood- too bad she didn't stick to examining that rather than making broad generalizations based mainly on her own experience.
As for solutions, Flanagan is short on these. Removing internet access from bedrooms, and having fathers or other strong male figures intimidate the boys that their girls are dating are the main ones. She states that she is old-fashioned enough to believe that girls are hurt more than boys by early sexual experiences, and she is apparently old-fashioned enough to not hold boys ( or men) accountable for this, or even hope for better from them. She offers no solutions for raising better boys- the burden is all on the girls or parents of girls.Read more ›
I found Flanagan's stand rather at odds with modern thought. Rather than teaching girls to be strong and independent, she wants them to rely on their fathers to protect them. Now don't get me wrong; I'm all for keeping both parents present in the girl's life! But I don't feel that having the father absent from the dwelling is necessarily worse for girls than it is for boys, and I don't feel that the couple has to be heterosexual to raise a healthy girl. Nor do I think that denying `net access in the privacy of a girl's bedroom will keep her from seeing the wrong things; most modern phones will allow her to see all the wrong places anyway.
I just don't think that putting a teenage girl in a cocoon is the best way to prepare her for adult life. If going through adolescence is as traumatic as Flanagan says it is, girls need to be given the tools to deal with it, not hidden in fluffy pink womb.Read more ›
So which chapter do you want first? Not that it matters. Every chapters starts and ends with sex. Dating? Sex. Menustration? Sex. Proms? Sex. Diaries? You guessed it, sex. Flanagan writes "...A diary is a place where a girl can record and examine her sexual progress..." Really.?! I kept a diary for years as an adolescent and even as an adult and Flanagan's perspective is so far from my experience, but hey, that's just me. However, I dare not believe young girls are as consumed with sex as so portrayed in Flanagan's Girl Land.
Girl Land should not be seen as some social retrospective on the life of young girls, it's far from that. It is a journal of one woman's beliefs which I imagine are based on her life experiences. Yet, I wonder how different the book would read if Flanagan were the mother of a young girl.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Not a boring book, but a rather confused jumble of points loosely relating to budding sexuality, with no overall clear point, only some rather fluffy recommendations at the end. Read morePublished 21 months ago by amy newell
a personal essay of the philosophy under the gender wars of our times...and readable thoughts on how it is to be a girl.Published on June 6, 2013 by Yvonne L. Lalanne
I somehow lost all of my notes that I wrote down while reading this book so I'll have to go based on what I remember feeling about this book. Read morePublished on June 27, 2012 by Kindle Customer
I addressed this in my blog ([...]), but I'll add here that readers should check out this book mostly if they agree also to go online and peruse the frothing, self-righteous... Read morePublished on March 27, 2012 by Ritt Deitz
I had mixed feelings about Girl Land and it was certainly not what I expected. Being the youngest daughter of seven children, three others of which were girls, I could relate to... Read morePublished on January 31, 2012 by Autumn Blues Reviews
I loved this book! It is an easy read but really generates a lot of things that make someone think about the current culture surrounding girls today. Read morePublished on January 26, 2012 by NYC Gator
I tried to read this all the way through, it kept dragging on finally deleted from my kindle. Gives you view points of the everchanging "right way to raise your daughter" and while... Read morePublished on January 21, 2012 by Rachel_18
I bought this book because I always find Caitlin Flanagan's prose to be both elegant and thoughtful. Read morePublished on January 21, 2012 by K. H. C.