My Life as a Girl / Your Life as a Girl
Hello friends! My name is Misty and I’m a Senior here at UCF. My major is Interdisciplinary Studies with concentrations in Physical Sciences and Humanities, as well as Minors in Theatre and Women’s Studies. I sing in the a cappella club, I’m an honors student, and I love to act in films. I’m taking this class because I’m very passionate about Women’s Studies, and also because I have a 15 year old sister and I want to be able to relate to what she is going through. I’m so excited for this class and look forward to working with all of you J
Sittenfeld, Your Life as a Girl:
I feel that Sittenfeld did capture girlhood effectively. To start, her style of writing was hectic and fast-paced, much like my own hectic and fast-paced experience of growing up as an adolescent and into my teens. The cruelty shown by her male classmates with the use of female-specific vocabulary was an accurate portrayal of how, once differences have begun to be discovered between boys and girls in middle and high school, a new discourse is created to further stereotypes and derogatory, sexist language. Middle school was the first time I encountered such discourse toward/dealing with young women.
The desire Anna has about wanting attention from her male classmates and the delicate balance she has yet to find between gaining that attention and “overstepping her boundaries” is something I believe many girls go through. What struck me most profoundly was the transition of Anna’s thoughts from a younger, more carefree 5th grader, to a nervous, insecure teenager who envies boys and is so affected by what they think of her. Sittenfeld’s story may not relate to every girl and their experience through girlhood simply because every girl is different, not every girl went to boarding school, not every girl was into sports, etc. However, she effectively captured the essence of the general insecurities and feelings of confusion that are so prominent in girlhood.
The stories written by the girls in RED were fantastic. The intuitive first person narratives were easy to read and made the stories personal and emotive. Sittenfeld’s story was much more intense, and covered a longer time period, than any of the stories in RED. Both Sittenfeld and the girls had the same curious feel in their stories, with questions left unanswered, but the stories in RED felt more real- probably because they were. Also, the stories in RED were much more uplifting: Mini finds her confidence on the rock climbing wall, Jaclyn discovers that her purpose in life is to be a doctor and is hopeful even after her mother is attacked, whereas Anna in Sittenfeld’s story takes more of a passive approach to her problems.
The girls who did not get as much out of their experience as they initially expected, like Samantha who did not win the Scripps National Spelling Bee, or Kelly who did not get enough time with her horse before it passed, still find positive things to take away from their journeys. I particularly liked the stories written by Lindsay about being alone, and Erika who spent two summers in