Girl Reader

Posted by – December 23, 2008

From an article in the December 2008 Atlantic Monthly about why teen girls love vampires:

The salient fact of an adolescent girl’s existence is her need for a secret emotional life – one that she slips inot during her sulks and silences, during her endless hours alone in her room, or even just when she’s gazing out the classroom window while all of Modern European History, or the niceties of the passé composé, sluice pasat her. This means that she is a creature designed for reading in a way no boy or man, or even grown woman, could ever be so exactly designed, because she is a creature whose most elemental psychological needs – to be undisturbed while she works out the big quetions of her life, to be hidden from view while still in plain sight, to enter profoundly into the emotional lives of others – are met precisely by the act of reading.

I don’t agree with the gendered conclusion she comes to, but I thought it was a nice description of reading, especially of reading novels, especially when you’re a child or young teenager. At least it described me somewhat, right down to the passé composé (which I did manage to pick up, eventually).

I remember reading a theory once that young female readers figure out how to masturbate sooner than their peers, exactly because they’re used to & look forward to time alone.

4 Comments on Girl Reader

  1. divadarya says:

    Well…I spent a lot of time alone and I read a lot…..(ahem)

  2. JudeTheNew says:

    Thought you might want to publicize this controversy from the dear Pope.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/7797269.stm

    take care,
    Jude

  3. Leah B says:

    I noticed that the article mentioned the book Prep. Seriously you guys, this book is a must read.

    For me, it has a lot of personal signifigcance too, as it was instrumental in my awakening to my TGness. I felt like I was really in the mind of the protagonist. Curtis Sittenfeld (who is indeed female, despite what her name would imply) is a fantastic writer.

    But for an endorsement from just a plain ol’ cisperson, Goldferris loved it too.

  4. Leah B says:

    Crap, did I say Goldferris? I meant Sobe1ove (my ex-gf). Keeping track of these net names sometimes gets confusing.

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