Friday, August 28, 2009

I ain't no Hollaback Grrrl!

Hi everyone I’m Anita, but I go by Ani. I am originally from Michigan, so I hate this Florida heat. My time is spent reading, cleaning obsessively, and watching really trashy reality TV. I’m the girl in class that speaks way too much, I’m almost positive that every time I raise my hand people roll their eyes. My height has reached its peak at 5’1” but my voice never shakes. Growing up I thought I was supposed to be a boy, but my love of fashion and gossip helped me form a few friendships with girls. Now I realize that my reproductive organs should not determine how I act/love/speak/dream. I hope to one day earn a PhD. in Social Psychology, and create programs to help school boards minimize violence against open/out GLBT youth. I am taking this class for two reasons 1.it didn’t fit into my schedule the first time it was offered and came very highly recommended 2. I want to critically analyze why girls like me feel so out of place.

Sittenfeld, Curtis. “Your Life as a Girl”
I found the overall tone of this article to be very realistic. I could definitely relate to the four square incident, to this day I am constantly being “checked” as to how competitive I become, where my male counter parts are free to do as they please. The girl in the story went through a transformation of being care free and happy to being worried and possibly anxiety ridden. I would have loved for her to take a stand and become the girl she was at the beginning of the story but I understand that most girls do not find that solace ever again. I enjoyed that there was no real separation with years other than in the text. There also was no specific age given, I feel this made it much more real. Those years seemed to go by so fast and when you were done with a school year I always looked back on them hazily as if they were a drunken memory.

Red: The next generation of American writers.
Out of all of the stories I could relate the most to two; “The Management” and “Alone”. I have had a few bosses that might not have been drunk like in “the Management” but I have had a boss question my strength and intelligence as a girl, let alone customers that call me “little lady” and “missy”. Working with people is especially difficult when you do so from a feminist mindset. You might not want to yell at your boss for perpetuating patriarchy because the money is something you need, you can’t always tell customers that they are sexist and try to teach them about gender equality. Anna Saxon is 17 and has learned a very tough lesson of sometimes you just have to play the hand you’re dealt and hope for the best. The good thing is that she has a new boss that seems to better than the last.

Lindsay Sellers, “Alone”, describes exactly how I feel about life. I was so happy that she was able to use this medium to say that it is OK to be happy when alone. When she states “I can’t tell him that visiting simply doesn’t afford me enough privacy” (pg207), I think of how I felt when I first started dating. There was this weird pull of where I should spend my time. Who should I make happy, this man I love or myself. At times I still feel selfish but the truth is that sometimes you have to look out for yourself. Hopefully Lindsay will find a man that respects her needs and lifestyle, so that she doesn’t have to be in that awkward situation. Lindsay states “every once in a while, I do wish that a friend were there” (207) like her I am too still looking for that balance of aloneness and friendship.

4 comments:

mk morley said...

Sexism in the workplace is so ridiculously frustrating. In my job I routinely have to lift really heavy things, often for customers, and men often can't handle it. "Are you sure you've got it?" etc. But you can't exactly tell them off.

I thought I'd comment also because I really loved "Alone," too. Girls asserting that aloneness does not equal loneliness is awesome.

Leila said...

Many girls who don't realize sexism is a problem "in today's society" find out some unfortunate realities about it when they enter the workplace. I used to have a boss at one of my restaurant jobs who made us kiss his cheek before he gave us our credit cards tips. Needless to say, I didn't last very long;)

mhendrix said...

Hi Anita,

First off great title! : ) Unlike you I could not relate so much to Sittenfeld’s reading as I have NEVER been athletically inclined in anyway! I love how you stated “I would have loved for her to take a stand and become the girl she was at the beginning of the story”. Your right in the beginning she was so carefree, powerful, and strong. But, later she became embarrassed of her abilities. Because girls are put into this box of who they are to be, society does not allow them to explore who they want to be. I can also relate to “The Management”. I think one of the biggest obstacles we women face is the preconceived notion that we are not as intelligent as men or intelligent at all. Lately I have run into some problems where I spoke up, but my opinions are never validated, mainly because I am a female. It is quite frustrating! I hope our generation can break the mold for the generations of girls to come and allow them more opportunity to be who they want to be, not who society wants them to be!

mhendrix said...

Leila,

Wow, that is amazing and sad that was allowed to go on in your workplace! Good for you girl for taking a stand! I think so many believe feminism is no longer needed that we have moved past those days, but there is still so much work to be done. The workplace is a perfect example of walls that still need to be broken down!