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Packaging Boyhood: Saving Our Sons from Superheroes, Slackers, and Other Media Stereotypes
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Packaging Boyhood: Saving Our Sons from Superheroes, Slackers, and Other Media Stereotypes

3.44  ·  Rating details ·  48 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
Player. Jock. Slacker. Competitor. Superhero. Goofball. Boys are besieged by images in the media that encourage slacking over studying; competition over teamwork; power over empower - ment; and being cool over being yourself. From cartoons to video games, boys are bombarded with stereotypes about what it means to be a boy, including messages about violence, risktaking, an
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Hardcover, 320 pages
Published October 13th 2009 by St. Martin's Press
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Scott Kennedy
Jul 10, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2016
A colleague who raved about this book passed this book onto me.

It was an interesting book, that highlighted an obvious point: the media / world around is selling our sons stereotypes of masculinity in their clothing, TV shows, books, music and entertainment and activities. No great shock there. The authors highlight a few of the typical stereotypes such as the superhero (guys are winners (often sporty / athletic who do great feats on their own) and the slacker (guys who can't live up to the sup
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Sarah
The case here was harder, I think for the authors to make. It is easily summarized. Boys are pressured to be best, to win, and to be powerful whether this particularly interests them or not.

They lost me when they complained about Guitar Hero, but they caught me again when they brought up the issue of homophobia.

It's possible that girls are accused of homosexuality when they refuse to conform, but largely I think we are more often accused of being "mannish." Ultimately, that's not so bad because
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Carol Mann Agency
Player. Jock. Slacker. Competitor. Superhero. Goofball. Boys are besieged by images in the media that encourage slacking over studying; competition over teamwork; power over empower - ment; and being cool over being yourself. From cartoons to video games, boys are bombarded with stereotypes about what it means to be a boy, including messages about violence, risktaking, and perfecting an image of just not caring.
Straight from the mouths of over 600 boys surveyed from across the U.S., the authors
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Jennifer
Feb 06, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: parenting
I'd just say this book was "ok" for me. It made several good points that I'd absolutely agree with (the problem with stereotypes and how they are taught to boys--the slacker, the player, etc.; the problem with media and video games, etc.)

But I felt like there were some things missing here. 1) The book offered a lot of problems, but few solutions. Minor example: Stereotypical baby clothes--trucks, bugs, sports, "tough guy," etc.--were pounced upon. But what would the author like to see instead?

2)
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Sarah
Jan 12, 2010 rated it liked it
I would give this another half-star, but I didn't enjoy this as much as
"Packaging Girlhood." I think both books are very important for parents to read. In general, our society needs to work much harder on media literacy so that our children grow up informed and able to recognize the stereotypes that are being sold to them. At the same time, I know I always say that when I have kids I'll be different, I'll encourage all of their interests. But who knows if I'll actually be able to do so. It's a
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Michelle Wheeler
Aug 23, 2011 rated it liked it
As a media literacy advocate, I love the practicality of this book. Though it retains a whiff of academia, it's still accessible enough for the average reader. Though there will, of course, be specific examples given where readers may or may not agree with the authors' assessment, the real value of a book like this is in its thought-provoking nature. Whether you buy into a specific example, you will hopefully walk away with your critical thinking skills a little more finely tuned, and your power ...more
Brittney
Feb 15, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: parenting
Admittedly, I only read the introduction, most of the first chapter, and the last chapter. It quickly became apparent that most of the book was merely a litany of things I'm already aware of: most little boys' clothing is covered in trucks and footballs; much rap music is misogynistic. The answers to my real question - what do I /do/ about it? - are brief and buried near the back. I had high hopes for this book based on Peggy Orenstein's recommendation, but its actual usefulness turned out to be ...more
Anne
Oct 28, 2009 rated it liked it
Interesting
Had to read a chapter at a time because it was dense and thought provoking.
Somehow, the girl version felt more readable. Why?

Does not resonate with me because of James' temperament?
Girl version did because of who Abby and Carrie are?

Could be helpful to parents..good to have in parenting library, especially if one's son is a traditionally minded boy.
Tracy
Dec 25, 2015 rated it it was ok
I decided not to finish this one. While I was quite intrigued by the concepts, it was a little too detail-heavy for me. I feel like I got a lot of the point early on, and I also was beginning to wonder what in the world was okay for my boys to have anything to do with. Maybe I wasn't patient enough.
Beth
Oct 26, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: parenting
I couldn't get through all of this, but I read about half the chapters. The writing isn't the best and for the most part the arguments are nothing new. I usually find books about commercialism and children interesting but in this case I just couldn't muster the indignation the authors were aiming for.
Sue
Jan 13, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: professional
Interesting look at what boys wear, watch, read and play/do. The chapter on boys and reading is pertinent and might be a good read for librarian groups. Some of the ideas are repetitive throughout the book. Good lists at end of reading section divided by age group.
Alisha
Jun 22, 2011 rated it it was amazing
It comes from the same authors of gritty Packaging Girlhood only THIS time we see what it is like for the oppsite sex-boys.
Boys are sold that they have to be manly to be "a real man".
LOVE this.
R. C.
Jul 03, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: gave-up
I found myself questioning many of their conclusions. My coparent and I have five boys. None of them have been sucked into these stereotypes. Perhaps we have been lucky.
Nadine
Mar 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
Really good reflexion on how the media affects or sons and practical advice on how to deal with it.
Mostly though: don't try to ban anything, show others stuff and talk about it.
Robert Marsh
Sep 08, 2010 rated it did not like it
Something deplorable and wrong-headed on every page. Sometimes in every sentence. Reminds me of Fredric Wertham.
Rita
Dec 12, 2009 marked it as to-read
Shelves: nonfiction
listed by Ms. fall 2009 as a good book for adults, along with

Packaging firlhood,
by Lamb and Brown.
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