Packaging Girlhood: Rescuing Our Daughters from Marketers' Schemes
Sharon Lamb and Lyn Mikel Brown
5 out of 5 Bacon Strips
Walk through any toy aisle, any girls' clothing section, or any children's book nook, and you'll see it: pink. Sometimes sparkled, sometimes hot, sometimes sweetly pastel, but you'll definitely notice the overwhelming overabundance of pink, America's symbol for all things feminine. But how much of pink culture is truly driven by girls' desires, and how much is pushed on them by marketing departments? And how harmful are these pre-packaged identities?
Almost all of it, and very, say authors Lamb and Brown. Packaging Girlhood is a fascinating examination of how marketers target children, and how they've shaped girl culture over the past couple of decades in the US. Backed up by scientific studies, opinion polls, and conversations with girls and their mothers, Lamb and Brown outline the titular "marketers' schemes" and then give parents the tools to combat them. Straightforward, conversational prose and a compelling premise made this a 5-strip book for me, the mother of a daughter, and is in my opinion a must-read for anyone raising or helping to raise a girl.
Lamb and Brown cover all of girl culture, from clothing to play, and include sample conversations to have with your daughter about what products say to them and to others. They include a list of online resources with more information and help, as well as alternative activities/communities for a girl who'd rather not be "Pretty in Pink".
I truly enjoyed this book as well as taking a great deal of advice from it. If you have any contact with young girls and women, I urge you to pick up Packaging Girlhood.