Thursday, February 9, 2012

what I thought about "cinderella ate my daughter"

I have a testimony of this book. Should you read this book? Let's ask some questions.

1. Do you think the princess culture is nauseating, and do you think that a person who buys clothing for a girl child with "diva" or similar messaging on it, thereby rewarding and encouraging toxic behavior, should be Shunned?
2. Do you think that pageant parents are pimps in everything but name, and should also be Shunned?
3. Do you think that eight-year-old girls are not cognitively the same as twelve-year-old girls, and that twelve-year-old girls are not cognitively the same as twenty-one-year-old girls, and they should all therefore have different rules regarding what is appropriate makeup and attire?
4. Do you hate the commodification of human beings, and sex being used as currency?
5. Do you want to raise a strong-minded, assertive daughter who knows that her value comes from her behavior, not her appearance, and are you concerned about your ability to do so?
6. Do you think that the kids today with their rock music spend altogether too much time immersed in a shallow, consumerist virtual world that is eroding the pillars of common human decency?

It turns out that I think all these things. I am STILL dealing with the fallout from #1 with the twelve-year-olds in my class. It is bizarre and off-putting. Also #3 is a REAL PROBLEM. I vehemently agree with almost everything Peggy Orenstein says in this book. I am so firmly in its intended audience. So if you're like me, you will love this book. Even if you're not like me, if you have a daughter you should read this book.

I like that she recognizes that there are typically differences between the sexes--males often think and behave in certain ways, females in others. But I also like that she emphasizes that there are more differences within the sexes than there are between them. That's true, my friends. Grant and Emmett are much more unlike each other than Grant and Willa are, for example. (That is code for "Grant and Willa have made me cry much more than Emmett has. Ike might end up a Furry. Not the sex kind of Furry, you perverts.")

She does have what I think is an error in her telling of the real Rapunzel story--she says that the prince fell onto some brambles, which blinded him, but in my book of children's stories the witch (Mother Gothel) scratched his eyes out. I guess it depends on whose retelling you fancy. I think the eye-scratching is probably more true to the original story.


Sarah said...

See, and I learned the story with the prince falling into the brambles and being blinded also. So I think I might like the book even more than you.

But fer real I need to read it.

All8 said...

I agree that all of us (I mean all of mankind, not just girls) need to learn that our value lies in our thoughts and actions rather than in our outward appearance. That said, our outward appearance says volumes about who we are. (i.e. Looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, Must be a duck.)

Also I get tired of the whole needing rescued thing, but it sure is nice to have someone to walk to road with.

Heaven bless you for teaching 12 yr olds.

Tori said...

I took Marlo into the Disney store for the first time today. We were cruising the mall with a new-ish friend and her son, and I didnt have the heart to say we are trying to keep Marlo away from the princess thing. She was telling me all about 'Belle's makeover palace' and I was having a REALLY hard time trying to phrase my response correctly so as not to kill the budding friendship. I bought Marlo a Minnie mouse car. So I'm kind of a sellout.