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  • Katie shared from Future Girl: Young Women in the Twenty-First Century by Anita Harris
    Social expectations of women have also undergone transformation in recent times. The impact of feminism can be seen in the laws, policies, and mores of a large number of Western countries. Young women are widely held to be the beneficiaries of these changes. As I have suggested in this book, the gains of feminism and the needs of contemporary capital have made an unlikely alliance. Young women are imagined and invested in as those most able to prevail and flourish in these new times because, courtesy of feminism, they are the ones who are supposed to be most sold on the message of self-invention....
  • Katie shared from Future Girl: Young Women in the Twenty-First Century by Anita Harris
    Success and failure are constructed as though they were dependent on strategic effort and good personal choices. These qualities then seem instrumental in categorizing young women as either can-do or at-risk. However, these designations have much more to do with economic and cultural resources than personal competencies. It is because of these resources that can-do girls are rarely able to fail, while other young women have few opportunities to succeed. While there are plenty of can-do girls who are inexplicably feeling that they can’t do, they are relentlessly managed back onto a success track.
  • Katie shared from Future Girl: Young Women in the Twenty-First Century by Anita Harris
    The structural conditions that in fact limit their choices are generally only taken into account to demonstrate how families and communities model inappropriate lifestyles to their youth. Their so-called failure seems not only inevitable, but freely chosen and therefore warranting little sympathy.
  • Katie shared from Future Girl: Young Women in the Twenty-First Century by Anita Harris
    The notion that there exists a new cohort of bad girls indulging in disordered consumption is another strategy by which some young women are produced as failures. Unlike the can-do girls, who know how to successfully engage in the market, these other young women make poor consumption choices and enact the gains of feminism in problematic ways. Their consumer failures, as demonstrated through drug use, gang membership, criminal activity, and early sexual relationships, are depicted as a consequence of bad choices. It is this idea of willfulness and agency that makes an attribution of self-selected...
  • Katie shared from Future Girl: Young Women in the Twenty-First Century by Anita Harris
    Structural disadvantage is recast as poor personal choices, laziness, and incompetent family practices. At-risk and risk-taking youth are then frequently seen as inheriting bad attitudes, which trickle down through their communities. Through this categorization they are constructed as likely failures. Young women who are deemed to be at-risk are cut off from the imagined majority of successful girls, and their problems tend to become the ways in which they are universally defined.