More than a line in a Prince song . . .

Hello All and welcome to my very first post for Act Your Age – a blog devoted to representations of girlhood in popular culture. I want to take this opportunity to share my ideas behind the blog and give some thanks.

What you need to know about me is that I describe myself as a feminist girls media studies scholar. A bit of a mouthful I know and maybe over the course of this blog I (or better yet we) can come up with a sexier title. But for now this is the best phrase that summarizes my research interests: girls + media + feminist theory.

As for the title of this blog, Act Your Age refers to my current research interest in girl characters and casting. I am particularly interested in two developments and the ways in which they relate to how we construct, frame, and discuss contemporary girlhood:

1.)    the industrial practice of casting adult females for girl characters in media texts, for example: Jennifer Jason Leigh was 20 years-of-age when she portrayed high school sophomore Stacy Hamilton in Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982).

2.)    the moral panics associated with girl actors who have appeared in films that deal with sexuality and sexual violence, for example: the blog backlash aimed at Dakota Fanning’s parents for allowing their then 12-year-old daughter to play a 12-year-old girl who is raped in the film Hounddog (2007).

I’ll explore these topics and the overall question of what it means to be “not a girl, yet not a woman” in films, television shows, music, books, magazines, and online – and how pre-teens and tweens respond to these texts and create their own media.

Before I close this first post I’d like to thank my good friend Alyx over at feminist music geek. Alyx has been on my ass for months about starting a blog – and it has finally paid off!

~ by actyourage09 on December 20, 2009.

One Response to “More than a line in a Prince song . . .”


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