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September 11, 2006

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David

Thinking a lot about your book and its suggestions. I worry that you may be, generally speaking, preaching to the choir. It seems to me that many mothers (at least in my affluent suburb) actively shower their girls with pink-n-sparkly.

While those interested in your views may take some pointers on how to discuss marketers' attempts at undermining (both girls AND boys), those parents likely already knew *something* was going on. What is to be done with the, oh, I dunno, pageant moms who act as unwitting (or witting) arm of the marketeers?

As my girls progress from family-focused processes toward the world at large, how do I help secure their selves against the stronger and more insidious barrage of peer-pressure attacks WITHOUT causing them to be tagged as outsiders (or, indeed, to BE outsiders)?

As an aside: I do this by focusing on the unique attributes of my own family, pointing out how many of the things that we do are important, and how much of the world is not going to understand. In other words, I am preparing them to be outsiders, and I am further assuming that their gifts (and there are many, and, frankly, good looks are among them) will allow them to be independent-minded DESPITE that potential outsider status.

On the plus side, "society" (and socialization) are so fractured now that their divergence from the fat part of the bell curve will likely go little noticed; indeed, they will be much less "freakier" than what one can find in Harvard Square any day of the week.

In any case--thank you for your thoughtful book, which somehow manages to deliver an important message without suffering the burden of many capital-"F" Feminist tracts (which some fathers may find a bit off-putting and hence ignore the message).

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