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Girls’ Sexualities and the Media

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Edited By Kate Harper, Yasmina Katsulis, Vera Lopez and Georganne Scheiner Gillis

This anthology provides exciting, innovative research focused on the construction of adolescent girls’ sexuality in the media. The volume includes a variety of theoretical and methodological perspectives from the humanities and the social sciences, addressing how girls and others respond to, work with, and even resist prevailing media representations of girls’ sexualities and how they use contemporary media as a form of sexual expression.
The authors consider a wide array of sexual attitudes, behaviors, and expressions not commonly seen in the sexualities literature, including the voices of «other» girls whose voices are often ignored, particularly racial/ethnic minority and indigenous girls, sexual minorities, and girls from non-U.S. settings. The use of ethnographic data, in conjunction with media analysis techniques, provides a unique approach to the media studies genre, which tends to highlight an analysis of media content, as opposed to the ways in which media is used in everyday life.

«This edited collection is a refreshing look at research that embraces the basic tenets of cultural studies work. It boldly explores the context (history) within which representations emerge, emphasizes the importance of audiences, and offers a feisty review of ways girls can talk back to the culture through resistance.» (Deb Merskin, Associate Professor, School of Journalism & Communication, University of Oregon; Co-Editor, Critical Thinking About Sex, Love, and Romance in the Mass Media)
«This truly outstanding collection of essays – by pioneers as well as rising stars in the fields of girls, gender, sexuality, and media studies – sheds new light on the interaction of innumerable forces at work in regulating and resisting girls’ sexuality in popular media. The tripartite arrangement of the essays, which critically consider the intersection of girls’ age, class, race, ethnicities, nationalities, and sexualities, frames this comprehensive examination of popular representations of girls’ sexuality, girls’ reception and self re/presentations, as well as girls’ media literacy endeavors.
The nuanced explorations of competing fears and fantasies about female adolescent sexuality in Twilight, Harry Potter, MTV’s 16 and Pregnant, and other discursive texts are sure to resonate with students who – along with the fictional and real girls whose voices are included in this collection – already reflect, resist, and/or reclaim media sexualization in their everyday lives.
Instructors will find that, in addition to providing essential content, context, and concepts that scrutinize social anxieties and sexual agency, the variety of methods and theories reframing current debates in these essays will inform the research of the next generation of girls’ studies scholars.» (Miriam Forman-Brunell, Professor of History, Women, and Gender Studies, University of Missouri-Kansas City; Author, ʻBabysitters: An American History’; Editor, ʻThe Girls’ History and Culture Readers’)
«This vibrant collection of essays makes a valuable contribution to girlhood studies and sexualities studies and helps to open up an important space for debate between them. Interdisciplinary, international, and attentive to the way power works intersectionally, Girls’ Sexualities and the Media is an exciting addition to the field.» (Rosalind Gill, King’s College London; Author, Gender and the Media; Co-Editor, ʻNew Femininities: Postfeminism, Neoliberalism, and Subjectivity’)

«This edited collection is a refreshing look at research that embraces the basic tenets of cultural studies work. It boldly explores the context (history) within which representations emerge, emphasizes the importance of audiences, and offers a feisty review of ways girls can talk back to the culture through resistance.» (Deb Merskin, Associate Professor, School of Journalism & Communication, University of Oregon; Co-Editor, Critical Thinking About Sex, Love, and Romance in the Mass Media)
«This truly outstanding collection of essays – by pioneers as well as rising stars in the fields of girls, gender, sexuality, and media studies – sheds new light on the interaction of innumerable forces at work in regulating and resisting girls’ sexuality in popular media. The tripartite arrangement of the essays, which critically consider the intersection of girls’ age, class, race, ethnicities, nationalities, and sexualities, frames this comprehensive examination of popular representations of girls’ sexuality, girls’ reception and self re/presentations, as well as girls’ media literacy endeavors.
The nuanced explorations of competing fears and fantasies about female adolescent sexuality in Twilight, Harry Potter, MTV’s 16 and Pregnant, and other discursive texts are sure to resonate with students who – along with the fictional and real girls whose voices are included in this collection – already reflect, resist, and/or reclaim media sexualization in their everyday lives.
Instructors will find that, in addition to providing essential content, context, and concepts that scrutinize social anxieties and sexual agency, the variety of methods and theories reframing current debates in these essays will inform the research of the next generation of girls’ studies scholars.» (Miriam Forman-Brunell, Professor of History, Women, and Gender Studies, University of Missouri-Kansas City; Author, ʻBabysitters: An American History’; Editor, ʻThe Girls’ History and Culture Readers’)
«This vibrant collection of essays makes a valuable contribution to girlhood studies and sexualities studies and helps to open up an important space for debate between them. Interdisciplinary, international, and attentive to the way power works intersectionally, Girls’ Sexualities and the Media is an exciting addition to the field.» (Rosalind Gill, King’s College London; Author, Gender and the Media; Co-Editor, ʻNew Femininities: Postfeminism, Neoliberalism, and Subjectivity’)