Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Girl Talk

Pierre-Auguste Renoir: A Girl with a Watering Can, 1876

I recently read Lisa Bloom's article, "How to Talk to Little Girls" and it was completely eye opening. The author discusses how our cultural norm is to complement little girls on their clothes, their hair, or something else looks related and how this instils a concept of beauty being the utmost important. As I read, I realized I am completely guilty of this. When I see my boyfriend's niece, I always complement her on her dress, or shoes, or pretty curls, never considering that I'm helping to encourage our culture's looks-centric expectations.  Instead, the article suggests talking to girls about something of substance, like books or activities, to help promote and encourage individual thinking and education. While I'm not sure I can completely end all beauty compliments, I mean little girls really are adorable, I've made a vow to increase my substance-based comments and decrease my looks-based ones. What do you think; are our compliments helping to influence beauty obsessions for little girls?
xx Molly

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