The Ian Parry Scholarship Winners 2013

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The six ways we talk about a teenage girl’s age…The idea that a teen can be “older than her chronological age” puts young girls in danger-BY SORAYA CHEMALY

 

When you consider the many ages of adolescent girls, it is clear that our cultural imagination encourages boys and men to think of young girls as fair game. By the time a girl is 12, she isn’t even seen as a whole human being, but regarded for her parts. She’s “forbidden fruit,” “a temptress,” “a man trap” and “asking for it.” All she has to do to be targeted sexually is go for a walk. If she wears skimpy clothes, is overly friendly with a teacher, dances with abandon, especially if she’s a girl or young woman of color, she might be blamed for her own assault. This is a male fantasy. And I haven’t even mentioned schoolgirl pornography or designer vaginas.The six ways we talk about a teenage girl’s ageThe idea that a teen can be "older than her chronological age" puts young girls in danger