Growing Girls: The Natural Origins of Girls' Organizations - download pdf or read online

By Susan A Miller

ISBN-10: 0813540631

ISBN-13: 9780813540634

ISBN-10: 0813541565

ISBN-13: 9780813541563

Within the early years of the 20th century, americans started to realize youth as a developmental part precise from either adolescence and maturity. This knowledge, even if, got here fraught with anxiousness in regards to the debilitating results of contemporary lifestyles on kids of either sexes. For boys, aggressive activities in addition to "primitive" outside actions provided through fledging corporations reminiscent of the Boy Scouts might allow them to strive against the effeminacy of an excessively civilized society. yet for women, the treatment wasn't really so clear.Surprisingly, the "girl problem"?a predicament attributable to the transition from a sheltered, family-centered Victorian youth to fashionable formative years the place strength of mind and a powerful democratic spirit have been required of trustworthy citizens?was additionally solved in terms of regularly masculine, adventurous, outside actions, as practiced through the lady Scouts, the Camp hearth women, and plenty of different comparable organizations.Susan A. Miller explores those women' organisations that sprung up within the first half the 20 th century from a socio-historical viewpoint, displaying how the notions of uniform id, civic accountability, "primitive domesticity," and health formed the formation of the fashionable woman.

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Additional resources for Growing Girls: The Natural Origins of Girls' Organizations in America (The Rutgers Series in Childhood Studies)

Example text

When the gang of young boys saw girls gamely hiking through a local meadow they did not see Girl Scouts, but rather Boy Scouts who happened to be girls. This little story illuminates the crux of the dispute over uniforms: both sides were essentially correct. Girls in uniform did gain a measure of recognition and respect, while boys became far too closely associated with the very girls who were crashing their all-male party. The Boy Scouts had, after all, adopted khaki because it was a recognizable symbol of hardy masculine character traits.

A girl’s new role as consumer forced the adults who cared about her, be they parents or leaders of her chosen organization, to grant her at least limited status as an independent actor with her own needs and preferences. Leaders of girls’ organizations often seemed as proud of offering their girls choices as they were bemused by what she might actually choose, hedging their bets on whether to grant girls full citizenship in the consumer culture. The problem Luther Gulick faced was that unlike his Girl Scout rivals, he had chosen to make his organization’s “uniform” symbolic of his fears about launching girls into the wider world, not representative of his faith that they could manage their new independence.

12 This did not mean that girls shouldn’t be publicly acknowledged for their achievements, just that both task and reward had to conform to women’s prescribed sphere. “Boys receive honors and medals Fashioning Girls’ Identities 21 for doing manly things. 13 Perhaps repenting of the brusque warnings about feathers that had appeared in the February 1914 issue of Wo-He-Lo, Camp Fire’s monthly magazine, leadership soon tried a more lighthearted tack. Three months later, WoHe-Lo featured an Any Girl drama in which girls were given a different way to interpret their ceremonial dress and were shown a more positive way to think about the honors that were available to them.

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Growing Girls: The Natural Origins of Girls' Organizations in America (The Rutgers Series in Childhood Studies) by Susan A Miller


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