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I Am an Emotional Creature: The Secret Life of Girls Around the World Hardcover – February 9, 2010
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*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
"When I encounter 'teenage girl' stories, whether in novel, play, or film form, I tend to change the channel. Participating in pop culture’s clichéd teen experience is like recalling “simpler times.” It is remembering a past we can never get back, because it never existed. I can’t think of a time when my life was less defined—popularity was a murky concept, rules were rubber, and perfection was always just out of reach.
Leave it to Eve Ensler to get it right. Her new book, I Am an Emotional Creature, made me want to vomit from its emotional power. Ensler does not coddle the reader; instead she forces us to realize that teenage girls possess the largest untapped energy source in the world. Written in a similar format as her groundbreaking 1996 feminist theatrical work, The Vagina Monologues, I Am an Emotional Creature is a disjointed roller coaster of poems, fictional monologues, and scenes inspired by real girls around the world. Much like a quilt, the seams—the disparity between each piece—draw them closer together, even when the girls the stories describe live on opposite sides of the globe.
Ensler’s world is a place where one high-school girl is tortured for her Ugg boots and another is mutilated for having a vagina, and she manages to tell both sides with equal degrees of honesty, courage, and heartache. Ultimately about all girls, this is a tale about dreams, nightmares, realities, boyfriends, fathers, body image, sports, friendship, popularity, mothers, piercings, and poetry. It’s the God’s honest truth, as my mother would say".—Bust Magazine
“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…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
"These are sorrowful voices, and the waste is everywhere: waste of beauty, talent, grace. Sometimes their powerful exuberance rises up and you believe they have a shot at happiness."—Los Angeles Times
"I Am an Emotional Creature" is thoughtful and provocative. Its unbiased acceptance of girls of all types is comforting and inspiring...Parents often lament about the drama and stress of raising a daughter. If they read Ensler's book, it might open up a discussion of the realities of generation Y."—The Associated Press
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Top Customer Reviews
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.
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.
This book makes excellent points throughout along with telling a story. One entry talked about how we can spend trillions of dollars to kill in a war, when that money could have easily stopped poverty and healed people.
This book is very graphic in a good way, it tells TRUTH which media, parents, and other sources always cover up.
I am 17 and this book was so enjoyable, but I feel like if I read it when I was 14 or 15 it would have hit me even more (but I am mature for my age). It's all about acceptance and going over obstacles in life.
I loved the ending when the author explains what people are always telling you to do, but what you really should do in the end. She has an entire list of things to do that willl please yourself..not the others around you.
I know some friends I would love to share this with.
This book could truly help some teenagers (or adults) dealing with similar issues. But it's also just an excellent, well-crafted book to enjoy. Either way, I believe it's very beneficial!! I absolutely loved it, I would recommend it to ANYONE! It truly opens your eyes.
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
I plan on suggesting this book to every woman I know and perhaps they'll help me fix the world. I have to, I must, before my 11 year old niece sees how broken the it is. I feel downtrodden but happy that there is 'reality' and poetry in literature.