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Girl Trouble: Panic and Progress in the History of Young Women
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Girl Trouble: Panic and Progress in the History of Young Women

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4.0 of 5 stars 4.00  ·  rating details  ·  74 ratings  ·  21 reviews
Horror, scandal and moral panic! The popular fascination with the moral decline of young women has permeated society for over a hundred years. Be it flappers, beat girls, dolly birds or ladettes, public outrage at girls' perceived permissiveness has been a mass-media staple with each changing generation.

Eminent social historian Carol Dyhouse examines what it really means
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Paperback, 272 pages
Published April 23rd 2013 by Zed Books (first published January 1st 2013)
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Sam
This is a thoroughly researched and well written insight into the changing (and not changing) attitudes of women, primarily in the UK but with references to the USA. This book shows how far women have come in some areas and how little has changed in others, particularly how the media and society as a whole responds when women act how they want to and not how they are told to (very familiar with this...). Dyhouse manages to keep much of her writing a little light-hearted given the subject matter ...more
Kate
Excellent, as expected of Dyhouse. It's difficult to describe her prose without sounding like I'm damning it with faint praise: it's so lucid and economical and effortlessly enjoyable to read it's too easy to overlook the truly impressive scholarship and research behind every sensible, balanced sentence. This is a great overview/introduction to these themes, though having read her Glamour: Women, History, Feminism and Girls Growing Up in Late Victorian and Edwardian England, many elements (and s ...more
Grace
This was a really interesting and pretty intense look at the changing lives of young women in (mainly) the united kingdom and the united states. It looks at all aspects of their lives, from the changing attitudes towards marriage and education, to the public responses to what they saw as wild young women. From flappers to ladettes, this book shows how the public perception of young women often differed from reality, double standards between the sexes were rife and young women had to fight every ...more
rachael gibson
As other reviewers have said, the best thing about this book is how it takes some difficulty and complex theories and turns them into easily understandable ideas - it's not a difficult read at all. What is difficult is the depressing truths within and seeing how little has changed in some aspects...
Jbondandrews
I enjoyed reading about Girl Trouble. It made me wonder how active were my female ancestors in the suffrage movement and as I have found the voter lists for my great grandmother and great great grand mother, I would like to believe they were very active.
Lesley
So very good, such an amazing mass of research so engagingly written, such important debunking of pervasive popular preconceptions and nostalgic visions.
Yasmin
Finished Girl Trouble as it is only from the perspective of Britain it is a little restrictive. It would be interesting to know about a book that covered many countries into one. In the part focusing on the 19th and early 20th centuries I have to admit I was sceptical. However, I have not made that time period a study of mine, altho' I have not come across the newspaper headlines in any of the things I have read. But as I have not seen all the editions of The Women's World, from the mid 1880s I ...more
Karen
This book about social obsession with the conduct of women and girls from the Victorian era to the present is well written and thoroughly footnoted and indexed. Its main focus is on Britain, but it references similar situations in the US. Some of it was familiar territory (fears that educating girls and young women would flatten their chests and shrivel their ovaries, unfitting them for motherhood--or, if it didn't do that, it would make them so strong minded and unwomanly that no man would want ...more
Meredith
This book provides a history of the obsession with the conduct of young women, which has been a constant throughout history, from the Victorian era to the present. It's divided into several sections focusing on a particularly topic, and each of those sections are presented in chronological order.

I found the book extremely well-written and organized. Dyhouse is a balanced commentator, pointing out studies which are limited and drawing attention to differing views, especially on current events in
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Ester
Very interesting and well-written - only minor criticism is that I felt it veered more into a history of feminism from the 70s onwards, which is unavoidable to an extent but did shift the focus of the book quite a bit and covered things that I would suspect much of the readership is already aware of.
Amanda
I won this book in a goodreads giveaway. The topic isn't one I'd read much about previously, but it sounded interesting. This book is eye-opening and extraordinarily well-researched. It chronicles the social history of young women throughout the past century, and I was struck by how well the author analyzed social changes that I'd lived through, but hadn't given much prior thought to. Personally, I would have preferred more first-hand accounts, such as interviews or diary entries...I wanted to g ...more
Andie
Controlling the behavior of girls and young women has been the concern of societies from the beginning of recorded history, and this entertaining social history of British women in the 20th Century demonstrates that despite giant strides that women have have made in the past 100 years, there are still biases and prejudices that die hard.

Told with illustrative examples from popular literature, films and television. This book is an easy fascinating read. It's interesting to see the parallel tracks
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Rachael Eyre
A hugely accessible and readable social history. Highly recommended for a quick overview of the British feminist movement. I'll definitely read more of her books.
Elise
A well-written history about the progress of women, from a lower class of citizen who must be protected and kept at home to independent people with education and choices.

Focusing mostly on the UK, but certain aspects could easily be applied to the US. As prudish as Americans are, it's fun to see that Britons aren't much different--Britons are often portrayed in the media as much more sexual and accepting. We are more alike than some would care to admit.
Bianca
An interesting and well written book about young women and feminism from suffragettes to now. It wasn't what I expected but I couldn't put it down. I learned a lot and it made me think about my position of being a woman today. While it tries to be academic, there are moments of pure opinion that I personally didn't care. They make me take the text less seriously. Otherwise a good beginner feminist novel.
Eva
Loved it.
To me it's obvious that maybe, just maybe, people (male and female) should stop telling girls what to do, how to act, who to be and just let them do as they feel best.
Aimee Georgeson
Written by a historian so a bit dry but very informative if a little narrow in focus. 2.5 out of 5
Stephanie
this was a hard book to het into so I put it down after a few chapters into the book
Nita
fascinating history. Makes me appreciate the opportunities I have today.
Claire
loved this summary by a tutor of mine from Uni many years ago
Jeni
I would enjoy reading an American counterpart to this.
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Carol Dyhouse is a social historian. Her research has focused on gender, education and the pattern of women's lives in nineteenth and twentieth century Britain. Her books include Girls Growing Up in late Victorian and Edwardian England (1981); Feminism and the Family in England, 1890-1939, (1989); No Distinction of Sex? Women in British Universities (1995); and Students: A Gendered History (2006). ...more
More about Carol Dyhouse...
Glamour: Women, History, Feminism Girls Growing Up in Late Victorian and Edwardian England No Distinction of Sex? Students: Gendered History Feminism And The Family In England, 1880 1939

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