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Growing Up With Girl Power: Girlhood On Screen and in Everyday Life

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From the back cover: "For more than a decade, girl power has been a cultural barometer, reflecting girlhood's ever-changing meanings. How did girl power evolve from a subcultural rallying cry to a mainstream catchphrase, and what meaning did young girls find in its pop culture forms?" The website is http://www.GrowingUpWithGirlPower.com.

315 pages, Paperback

First published February 1, 2012

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About the author

Rebecca Hains

2 books20 followers
Dr. Rebecca Hains is a children’s media culture expert. She is a professor of media and communication at Salem State University in Salem, Mass.

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Displaying 1 - 2 of 2 reviews
Profile Image for Tucker.
Author 28 books192 followers
February 12, 2012
An in-depth examination of how "girl power" has been interpreted, not only by the riot grrrls who launched its punk movement, but by girls born in the 1980s and 1990s who grew up with the idea of "girl power" mass-marketed to them particularly through the Spice Girls and certain cartoons. Careful attention is given to race-based differences in girls' reactions to the media.

Hains details the ambiguities inherent in popularized, commercialized "girl power": in some forms it indeed promotes self-esteem, assertiveness, recognition of inner beauty and the importance of girls' friendships with other girls, while in other cases it is nothing more than reverse sexism against boys, image-based stereotyping of girls, and the mindless pabulum of cosmetic makeovers and nonsensical song lyrics.

The group interview transcripts with young girls are entertaining as well as illuminating. It only makes sense that they were consulted, and this makes the book stand out from other feminist texts that limit themselves to the opinions of adults. With the assumption that the reader has basic knowledge of and sympathy with feminism and anti-racism, this is a quite pleasurable read as an introductory text on the subject of girl power.
Profile Image for Alana "Loni".
181 reviews
June 4, 2014
This book was much more readable then most research-based studies. Part of this is because of the subject matter, but Rebecca Hains also relates the study in a conversational manner that makes it accessible, which is awesome. She is also very forthcoming about the limitations of the study, which I appreciate. Overall, it probably raised more issues than it settled, but that is kind of the point. Girls are not identical - they approach material with different backgrounds and situations. By allowing girls to speak for themselves, facilitating discussion, Hains is able to show how these particular girls are navigating feminism and media. Definitely recommended.
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