This book is a longer (women have achieved a lot since the early 1990s!) and very revised and updated version of the original. That book was one of the first books written about self-esteem for girls. I got the idea for the book because my own daughter, a preschooler, was encountering sexism even at that early age. Just one of the examples that I listed in the Introduction to the original version of the book:
An elderly man walking his dog through a park stops
to talk to a little girl [that would be Madeline] who is
climbing the monkey bars. “When I grow up, I’m going
to be a ballerina and a doctor,” she tells the man.
“You let the boys be the doctors,” the man replies.
“Girls don’t have the stomach to deal with blood.”
Tee-hee. Madeline is working toward a bachelor of science degree in nursing and then will go on to get a master’s degree in midwifery. I wanted to counteract those doses of boy bias by building up Madeline’s pride in her own gender while not bashing guys. The other thing that spurred me on at the time were the results of some very discouraging studies. For example, a 1991 American Association of University Women (AAUW) study found that only 29 percent of young teenage girls were “happy the way I am,” compared to the 60 percent who gave that response back in elementary school…and in marked contrast to their teenage boy counterparts, whose self-images had been judged much more positive.
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