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Growing Up Girl: Psycho-social Explorations of Gender and Class [Paperback]

Valerie Walkerdine , Helen Lucey , June Melody

RRP: 27.99
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Book Description

20 Sep 2001
Set against a backdrop of deindustrialisation, rising male unemployment and the feminisation and casualisation of the labour market, Growing Up Girl graphically explores the complexities of gender and class during a period of massive social change. It tells the story of today's 'I can have everything' girls who face unprecedented shifts in the organisation of family, education and work, and yet who continue to struggle with the not always visible but always palpable pressures of wealth, poverty, class and ethnicity. Drawing on data spanning nearly twenty years, the authors of this ground-breaking study provide a sobering antidote to commonplace platitudes about 'girl power' and a feminine future. They reveal the hidden price of middle class girls' apparently effortless achievements - obsessive hard work, guilt and devastating feelings of inadequacy - and they trace how the labour market cruelly sets material limits on the disappointed hopes and ambitions of working class girls. Vividly illustrating their arguments with quotations from the research participants, they show how young women's practices of self-invention are regulated both by unconscious processes and real social and economic constraints. Their insistent conclusion is that class is far from dead. Indeed, it is centrally important to our understanding of what it is to be a young woman in today's complex and challenging world, This important and grippingly written book is essential reading for students and scholars alike in sociology, cultural studies, women's studies, education and psychology. It will also be of interest to anyone else struggling to make sense of the position of women in society today.

Frequently Bought Together

Growing Up Girl: Psycho-social Explorations of Gender and Class + Class, Self, Culture (Transformations) + Formations of Class & Gender: Becoming Respectable (Published in association with Theory, Culture & Society)
Price For All Three: 80.93

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'...an important counterpoint to the sociological youth research literature that still tends to represent young people's move from education to the job market as involving a series of fairly rational choices. The book's analysis of structural and other theories of class and its grounding in sociological and psychoanalytic theories will be especially useful for those readers who might not be familiar with these debates.' - Christine Griffin, School of Psychology, University of Birmingham, Feminism & Psychology

About the Author

VALERIE WALKERDINE is Foundation Professor of Critical Psychology at University of Western Sydney, Nepean. She was previously Professor of Psychology in the Department of Media and Communications at Goldsmiths College, London. She is the author of a number of books including Daddy's Girl and Mass Hysteria. HELEN LUCEY lectures in the School of Education, King's College, University of London. JUNE MELODY is a Psychotherapist in training, living and working in West London.

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