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Meeting at the Crossroads Paperback – August 10, 1993

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 258 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books (August 10, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345382951
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345382955
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.8 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #724,805 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

"Should sound a national alert to society that even our most privileged girls still pursue normal femininity at great risk to personal and civic health."
Lyn Mike Brown and Carol Gilligan ask "What, on the way to womanhood, does a girl give up?" One hundred girls gave voice to what is rarely spoken and often ignored: that the passage out of girlhood is a journey into silence and disconnection, a troubled crossing when a girl loses a firm sense of self and becomes tentative and unsure. These changes mark the endge of adolescence as a watershed in women's psychological development and the stories the girls tell are by turns heartrending and courageous. Listening to these girls provides us with the means of reaching out to them at this critical time, and of better understanding what we as women and men may have left behind at our own crossroads.

About the Author

Lyn Mikel Brown is Associate Professor of Education and Human Development at Colby College.

Carol Gilligan is University Professor at the New York University School of Law. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Cindy L. on February 4, 2004
Format: Paperback
This book was based on five years of interviews with nearly 100 girls between the ages of seven and eighteen at a private girls' school in Cleveland, Ohio, from 1986 - 1990. The goal of this Harvard project was to explore girls' psychological journey from childhood to adolescence. The researchers began with a more traditional approach, separating the girls into an experimental group (using open-ended, more flexible interviews) and a control group (using more standardized methods). They soon discovered that this strategy was preventing the authentic relationships needed to gather useful information, so the researchers wisely re-evaluated and revised their approach. In this well-written book, the authors clarified the issues faced by the girls studied at three stages of development-childhood, pre-adolescence, and adolescence-primarily by describing the journeys of three individual guides for each stage. For example, the stories of Jessie, Sonia, and Lauren, the three childhood guides, connect the reader to the real-life issues faced by each girl over time. The guides' moving stories clearly documented the challenging journey from being able to speak clearly, directly, and honestly about relationship issues in childhood to often negating real feelings and thoughts through disassociation by adolescence. The researchers highlighted the psychological perils of silencing one's own voice and the potential political risks of not doing so. Given the all-girl setting, one might wonder how different the results would be in a mixed-gender school. There were hopeful signs, too. By the end of the project, the school's adult women realized that they needed to overcome their own self-silencing to provide healthier role models for the girls. Also, by listening to and validating girls' experience, adults, particularly women, can serve as hopeful beacons for change.
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38 of 46 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 19, 1997
Format: Paperback
The early chapters of this book, are very hard going, as the authors justify and re-justify their research methodology. However, when you get clear of this, the conversations with girls as they grow older, at different points in their lives, are fascinating. I found myself thinking through episodes in my own life and the life of my 13year old girl, to see how she has changed, and how my interventions or questions or just being there have helped (and hopefully not hindered too severely) her grow strong and confident. In the end, a powerful story of girls growing into womenhood, and the challenges they face.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By HLR on August 5, 2005
Format: Paperback
This is a necessary and revolutionary book for anyone interested in adolescent psychology, the female coming of age experience, and relationships between girls, young women, and adult women in and among our U.S. society. Although this book was written 13 years ago, I still found it relevant and full of insight pertaining to girls and young women today. What was most helpful to me as an educator and researcher on this very topic was the Listener's Guide which could easily be modified in the classroom as a "Reader's Guide" in order to assist students/readers in analyzing a coming of age novel or text. Although I found the book repetitious at times, it is still a fascinating study which results in well-documented research and "new" psychological theory pertaining to girls' development as they come of age.
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