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Tomboy : the surprising history and future of girls who dare to be different

by Davis, Lisa, 1972-

Format: Print Book 2020
Availability: Available at 8 Libraries 8 of 8 copies
Available (8)
Location Collection Call #
Brentwood Library Nonfiction 305.4 Davis
Location  Brentwood Library
Collection  Nonfiction
Call Number  305.4 Davis
CLP - East Liberty New Books HQ798.D36 2020
Location  CLP - East Liberty
Collection  New Books
Call Number  HQ798.D36 2020
CLP - Lawrenceville Non-Fiction Collection HQ798.D36 2020
Location  CLP - Lawrenceville
Collection  Non-Fiction Collection
Call Number  HQ798.D36 2020
CLP - Main Library Mezzanine - Non-fiction HQ798.D36 2020
Location  CLP - Main Library
Collection  Mezzanine - Non-fiction
Call Number  HQ798.D36 2020
CLP - Squirrel Hill Non-Fiction Collection HQ798.D36 2020
Location  CLP - Squirrel Hill
Collection  Non-Fiction Collection
Call Number  HQ798.D36 2020
Northland Public Library Nonfiction 305.409 D29
Location  Northland Public Library
Collection  Nonfiction
Call Number  305.409 D29
Western Allegheny Community Library Non-Fiction 305.409 DAV
Location  Western Allegheny Community Library
Collection  Non-Fiction
Call Number  305.409 DAV
Whitehall Public Library Nonfiction Collection NF 305.4 D294t
Location  Whitehall Public Library
Collection  Nonfiction Collection
Call Number  NF 305.4 D294t

Based on the author's viral New York Times op-ed, this heartfelt book is a celebration and exploration of the tomboy phenomenon and the future of girlhood.

We are in the middle of a cultural revolution, where the spectrum of gender and sexual identities is seemingly unlimited. So when author and journalist Lisa Selin Davis's six-year-old daughter first called herself a "tomboy," Davis was hesitant. Her child favored sweatpants and T-shirts over anything pink or princess-themed, just like the sporty, skinned-kneed girls Davis had played with as a kid. But "tomboy" seemed like an outdated word--why use a word with "boy" in it for such girls at all?

So was it outdated? In an era where some are throwing elaborate gender reveal parties and others are embracing they/them pronouns, Davis set out to answer that question, and to find out where tomboys fit into our changing understandings of gender.

In Tomboy, Davis explores the evolution of tomboyism from a Victorian ideal to a twentyfirst century fashion statement, honoring the girls and women--and those who identify otherwise--who stomp all over archaic gender norms. She highlights the forces that have shifted what we think of as masculine and feminine, delving into everything from clothing to psychology, history to neuroscience, and the connection between tomboyism, gender identity, and sexuality. Above all else, Davis's comprehensive deep-dive inspires us to better appreciate those who defy traditional gender boundaries, and the incredible people they become.

Whether you're a grown-up tomboy or raising a gender-rebel of your own, Tomboy is the perfect companion for navigating our cultural shift. It is a celebration of both diversity and those who dare to be different, ultimately revealing how gender nonconformity is a gift.
Published Reviews
Booklist Review: "It started, the author writes, when her three-year-old daughter announced she wanted a tie and a button-down shirt. What was going on here? The answer may have come when, three years later, the girl came home from school announcing she was a tomboy. Eureka! Inspiration for research into the subject and the fascinating book that has resulted, exploring, as it does, the concept of the tomboy from Victorian times to today's world, where considerations of gender are front and center. And when between one-third and one-half of adult women declare they were childhood tomboys. Though sometimes a bit wonky (look for words like androstenedione, neuroimaging, androphilic), the book is always well written and accessible, and interest never flags, even when the dive into the subject is at its deepest. The author divides her book into three parts: "The Creation of the Pink/Blue Divide," "Why Tomboys Do What They Do," and "Tomboys, All Grown Up." Interspersed throughout are accounts of actual tomboys, humanizing the text. The conclusion is clear: tomboys rule! Women in Focus: The 19th in 2020"
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review: "In this thorough and engrossing investigation, novelist Davis (Lost Stars) posits that gendered child rearing may soon be a thing of the past. Prompted by criticism of her 2017 New York Times essay about her gender-nonconforming daughter, Davis uncovered the mid-17th-century roots of the term tomboy and its evolution from having a negative connotation to a positive one in the late 1800s due in part to Louisa May Alcott's 1868 novel Little Women. By the 1920s, the early childhood years--previously gender neutral, with lace, ruffle, and bow-adorned outfits for both boys and girls--became a proving ground to "prepare kids for their future adult performances of gender" with the introduction of boy/girl toys and clothing. While the pop culture Girl Power movement in the 1980s and '90s ostensibly promoted tomboy-ism in television and film, Davis learned from gender studies experts that "these characters were allowed and encouraged and beloved because they seemed straight and cisgender. They weren't crossing the line into lesbian and/or trans territory." In coming out, Davis notes, tomboy actors Jodie Foster and Kristy McNichol mainstreamed LBGTQ issues, and today, "gender-creative" parenting--raising a child free of gender identity or expression until they decide for themselves--introduces a new approach. Davis's persuasive and deeply personal argument for moving beyond the gender binary will resonate with those curious about child rearing free of normative expectations. (May)"
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Additional Information
Subjects Tomboys -- History.
Women -- History.
Gender identity -- History.
Sex role.
Sex role in children.
Sex differences (Psychology)
Sex differences (Psychology) in children.
Social change.
Publisher New York :2020
Edition First edition.
Language English
Description xii, 319 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Bibliography Notes Includes bibliographical references (pages 273-305) and index.
ISBN 9780316458313
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