Odd Girl Out: The Hidden Culture of Aggression in Girls

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9780156027342: Odd Girl Out: The Hidden Culture of Aggression in Girls

Dirty looks and taunting notes are just a few examples of girl bullying that girls and women have long suffered through silently and painfully. With this book Rachel Simmons elevated the nation's consciousness and has shown millions of girls, parents, counselors, and teachers how to deal with this devastating problem. Poised to reach a wider audience in paperback, including the teenagers who are its subject, Odd Girl Out puts the spotlight on this issue, using real-life examples from both the perspective of the victim and of the bully.

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Review:

There is little sugar but lots of spice in journalist Rachel Simmons's brave and brilliant book that skewers the stereotype of girls as the kinder, gentler gender. Odd Girl Out begins with the premise that girls are socialized to be sweet with a double bind: they must value friendships; but they must not express the anger that might destroy them. Lacking cultural permission to acknowledge conflict, girls develop what Simmons calls "a hidden culture of silent and indirect aggression."

The author, who visited 30 schools and talked to 300 girls, catalogues chilling and heartbreaking acts of aggression, including the silent treatment, note-passing, glaring, gossiping, ganging up, fashion police, and being nice in private/mean in public. She decodes the vocabulary of these sneak attacks, explaining, for example, three ways to parse the meaning of "I'm fat."

Simmons is a gifted writer who is skilled at describing destructive patterns and prescribing clear-cut strategies for parents, teachers, and girls to resist them. "The heart of resistance is truth telling," advises Simmons. She guides readers to nurture emotional honesty in girls and to discover a language for public discussions of bullying. She offers innovative ideas for changing the dynamics of the classroom, sample dialogues for talking to daughters, and exercises for girls and their friends to explore and resolve messy feelings and conflicts head-on.

One intriguing chapter contrasts truth telling in white middle class, African-American, Latino, and working-class communities. Odd Girl Out is that rare book with the power to touch individual lives and transform the culture that constrains girls--and boys--from speaking the truth. --Barbara Mackoff

From the Back Cover:

REVISED AND UPDATED
WITH NEW MATERIAL ON CYBERBULLYING AND
HELPING GIRLS HANDLE THE DANGERS OF LIFE ONLINE
"Peels away the smiley surfaces of adolescent female society to expose one of girlhood's dark secrets: the vicious psychological warfare waged every day in the halls of our middle schools and high schools." San Francisco Chronicle
When Odd Girl Out was first published, it became an instant bestseller and ignited a long-overdue conversation about the hidden culture of female bullying. Today the dirty looks, taunting notes, and social exclusion that plague girls friendships have gained new momentum in cyberspace.
In thisupdated edition, educator and bullying expert Rachel Simmons gives girls, parents, and educators proven and innovative strategies for navigating social dynamics in person and online, as well asbrand new classroom initiatives and step-by-step parental suggestions for dealing with conventional bullying. Withup-to-the-minute research andreal-life stories, OddGirl Out continues to be the definitive resource on the most pressing social issues facing girls today.
"Passionate and beautifully written. A significant contribution to our understanding of the psychology of girls." Michael Thompson, co-author of Raising Cain
"Cathartic to any teen or parent trying to find company." Detroit Free Press
An American School Board Journal Notable Book in Education

RACHEL SIMMONS, best-selling author of Odd Girl Speaks Out and The Curse of the Good Girl, is an educator and cofounder of the Girls Leadership Institute. A Rhodes Scholar, she has appeared on Today, Oprah, and other major shows including her own PBS special, and writes frequently for Teen Vogue.
www.rachelsimmons.com
Reading guide and teacher's guideavailable at www.hmhbooks.com.

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Book Description Harcourt, Inc., Orlando, 2002. Softcover. Book Condition: New. 301 pages. Softcover. New book. PSYCHOLOGY. Using real-life stories and important discoveries, this book explores the most pressing social issues facing girls today and illuminates the culture of girls' aggression in our schools that is as widespread as it is painful. Includes a reading group guide. (Key Words: Psychology, Girls, Aggression, Rachel Simmons, Bullying, Taunting, Exclusion, Reading Group). book. Bookseller Inventory # 33187X1

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