Cinderella ate my daughter


I picked up this book out of curiousity.  What kind of effect does the “princessification” of girls have on young women? The premise is that uber exposure to princesses through the Disney marketing, girls are harmed. The question is interesting, but like many things in childhood impossible to isolate in the context of the overall environment.  While I do agree that our over materialistic society does create some soullessness for all that are in it, this particular problem seems to be a problem in that perhaps these girls are a little spoiled. My Catholic background always brings me back to the axiom that anything in extreme is bad, but a little bit is harmless in most cases.  In that way, I see that while my little nieces like to dress up like princesses, one has a wonderful whismical sense of dress, that is her own special thing, and the other is just as likely to have a cowboy hat on.  Both of them keep pace with multiple brothers.  Balance is the key.

She goes on to say that the indulgence in the princess can create an unbalanced sense of sexuallity in teenagers. This may be a contributing factor, but I think our society’s hypersexuallity may have just as much influence.  Again there is the problem of isolation.

Whether I disagree or agree with her premise, the book was interesting and well researched.  Peggy Orenstein deals with the issues in a thoughtful and personal way.   She studies many facets of this issue from the child pageant, pre-teen online activities to the American girl craze.  She looks at the issues from all sides, and is sympathetic to the idea that most parents are just trying their best.

Cinderella Ate My Daughter: Dispatches from the Front Lines of the New Girlie-Girl Culture by Peggy Orenstein, Harper Collins, 2011

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