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dangerous book for boys - Page 2

post #21 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by alima View Post
I don't have any problem with the gender thing. Having struggled to raise a boy (who's very much a boy's-boy, think Pig-Pen crossed with the Tasmanian Devil) in a post-feminist, very pc neighborhood, where "boy's stuff" is almost a dirty word, it's really nice to see something about boys world being celebrated. It bugs me that parents have jumped on this book so much, but don't any problem with the enormous amount of girl-specific stuff out there (and not just the "braid your hair" type books, how come there is no "boys in history" series of books like the American Girl series?)
post #22 of 216
Karen that actually helps a lot. I think I'd prefer the UK version, personally. At first, I was thinking about it for my nephew who is ten, but then I thought my Dad and Grandfather would probably enjoy it too. and if I'm getting one for my nephew, maybe my 7 yr old niece too...
post #23 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by alima View Post
I don't have any problem with the gender thing. Having struggled to raise a boy (who's very much a boy's-boy, think Pig-Pen crossed with the Tasmanian Devil) in a post-feminist, very pc neighborhood, where "boy's stuff" is almost a dirty word, it's really nice to see something about boys world being celebrated. It bugs me that parents have jumped on this book so much, but don't any problem with the enormous amount of girl-specific stuff out there (and not just the "braid your hair" type books, how come there is no "boys in history" series of books like the American Girl series?)
Um, because that's included in every history book I've ever read? Have you seen Sleepy Hallow? Read the Declaration of Independence? Turned on cable? Watched a historical film? I'd be hard pressed to know that girls did anything other than linger on their fainting couches in all of human history if these books didn't exist. Of course, there are multiple feminist critiques of American Girl too, like the fact that all the slaves are always smiling as they toil away...

However, I'm concerned that so many people are apologists for labeling cool childhood adventures with gender and justifying that labeling by saying that we also did it in the past. :

Gender typing them just labels the *kids* that are reading them as gender nonconformists (rather than just a label for the book). When that's not the truth at all, since many boys will like the boys book just as many boys will hate those types of activities. But darn it, those boys that don't *will* get the message that they're suspect as true boys. As they are.

We have a tomboy and a girly girl (so far) and we def love all books and don't censor around here, but we'd definitely use books like these to point out how the book use the words "boy" and "girl" to police them. And how that's not nice to do to kids.
post #24 of 216
My boys have had this since it first came out...nice book- it basically compiles all the stuff they knew in a very nice book....I bought it b/c as a kid(girl) I would've loved it! And I wouldn't have cared about the title,as i don't today. C'mon.let's be fair, the shelves are full of 'girl' titles,and my boys sometimes don't want to read something,thinking it's aimed at girls only.......
post #25 of 216
I got the book for my ds-6 a couple of months ago. We love it.
post #26 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by anniedare View Post
Um, because that's included in every history book I've ever read? Have you seen Sleepy Hallow? Read the Declaration of Independence? Turned on cable? Watched a historical film? I'd be hard pressed to know that girls did anything other than linger on their fainting couches in all of human history if these books didn't exist. Of course, there are multiple feminist critiques of American Girl too, like the fact that all the slaves are always smiling as they toil away...

However, I'm concerned that so many people are apologists for labeling cool childhood adventures with gender and justifying that labeling by saying that we also did it in the past. :

Gender typing them just labels the *kids* that are reading them as gender nonconformists (rather than just a label for the book). When that's not the truth at all, since many boys will like the boys book just as many boys will hate those types of activities. But darn it, those boys that don't *will* get the message that they're suspect as true boys. As they are.

We have a tomboy and a girly girl (so far) and we def love all books and don't censor around here, but we'd definitely use books like these to point out how the book use the words "boy" and "girl" to police them. And how that's not nice to do to kids.
Hmm - Have you even see the book you are railing against or are you judging it soley by its cover?
There's everything from growing sunflowers to appreciating Shakespeare to learning Latin phrases to making paper airplanes and playing chess and cricket in this book. I doubt there's a boy or girl alive who wouldn't find something in there that they connect with which leads me to believe it is far more affirming than divisive. (the whole common ground concept.) It will likely introduce readers (male and female) to topics and ideas they haven't been exposed to. It's an excellent book. And because of it, my son is clamouring for the girl's version - can't wait to see it. And my daughter who doesn't read yet has asked for both copies for Christmas.

Do you have a son? (i'm sorry I didn't check your sig before responding)
I think the messages boys receive these days are far more restrictive than the ones girls receive and the statistics bare that out. Boys are more likely to fail in school, be suspended, drop out, commit suicide, do drugs. They now are less likely to attend or graduate from post secondary education. Girls outnumber boys now in student government, law and medicine in university.

I hate that there are people who think my sons don't deserve things that affirm them as male because of the "sins of the father" didn't also affirm females in the same way historically. We have had a culture of affirming girls to the detriment of boys for a long time now. And I personally think it's great that this book is out there and that it is named the Dangerous Book for Boys if it leads even one boy to shut off the Nintendo and explore it's pages because it affirms so many ways to be a boy. I'm sure the girls version (assuming it is of the same quality) will be the same way.

I don't understand your comment about the name of a book being used to police children. You don't have to pass a DNA test before buying the book. If you want to pass it on to your girls then do so. And if you are truly worried about equality then work for ways to affirm boys as much as we as a society affirm girls. I think this book is a step in the right direction.

Karen
post #27 of 216
There is a whole discussion board regarding the gender issue here http://www.conniggulden.com/Forum/ph...pic.php?t=2505 and the author responds.

both of my boys love this book.
post #28 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by SagMom View Post
There is a whole discussion board regarding the gender issue here http://www.conniggulden.com/Forum/ph...pic.php?t=2505 and the author responds.

both of my boys love this book.
Thanks for passing that on
Karen
post #29 of 216
Excellent post Karen.

I have been thinking about getting these books for a while, and after reading all the positive comments I think I'm going to have to add them onto my Christmas shopping list. They sound like so much fun!
post #30 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by Karenwith4 View Post
this book is fantastic - we've had it since the spring and it's carted around everwhere we go. It's really influenced our summer.

I found this about the Daring Book for Girls
Includes everything you need for an essential toolkit; five karate moves every girl should know; important women of the last century; ghost stories and rainy day games; famous women spies; how to change a tire; campfire songs; stocks and bonds; ancient queens and modern princesses; and more!

The gender thing doesn't bother me. It's not a manifesto - it's just a collection of stuff that boys are drawn to, but it doesn't mean girls can't enjoy it too. We're getting a family copy of the Daring book for girls because my sons are looking forward to it as well.
My problem with it so far is that other than tire-changing and karate, both of which are very helpful, I notice that almost everything else you mentioned basically involves sitting and listening to stories, but the DBB has many more activities geared toward actually DOING something rather than sitting and listening to what other peeps did.
post #31 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by Meg Murry. View Post
My problem with it so far is that other than tire-changing and karate, both of which are very helpful, I notice that almost everything else you mentioned basically involves sitting and listening to stories, but the DBB has many more activities geared toward actually DOING something rather than sitting and listening to what other peeps did.
I just checked out the video on amazon.com for this book - it looks like there is tonnes of hands on stuff too. How to build a scooter, how to climb a tree, how to build a campfire, how to do cartwheels, planting a garden, how to paddle a canoe, making a willow whistle, hand clapping game etc. I think I need to get two copies of this book.
hth
Karen
post #32 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple Pomegranate View Post
Oh, that is just silly. Buy it for them, they will love it.





I know both my sons and my daughters would enjoy both copies without paying any mind to the title. But the my boys sew and knit and cook, and my girls work on cars and handle firewood, so .

It's NOT silly. I'm not going to buy them a GREAT book (because I agree that it sounds great) that is marketed to boys! What message does that pass - "Hey! Here's this great book with lots of cool stuff inside but just ignore that it says it's for boys on the cover." Even explaining that it's reminiscent of old-fashioned books isn't acceptable, why still the sexism today? I'm not going to support an author, or a publishing house, that pushes this agenda.

FWIW, Yes, I do have both genders in my house, I have two daughters and one son. My son doesn't play with gender specific things, nor do my girls.

I'm really not trying to be snarky about this...
post #33 of 216
Thread Starter 
it just seems to me like you are perpetuating the problem by not allowing your dd's to have something that is 'for boys'.
post #34 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by alima View Post
how come there is no "boys in history" series of books like the American Girl series?)
I think that the American Girl books were created because most of the classic historical fictions books ARE about boys.

However, if you are interested in historical fiction specifically about boys, the Dear America series has books with boys as the main characters.

dm
post #35 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by Karenwith4 View Post
I think the messages boys receive these days are far more restrictive than the ones girls receive and the statistics bare that out. Boys are more likely to fail in school, be suspended, drop out, commit suicide, do drugs. They now are less likely to attend or graduate from post secondary education. Girls outnumber boys now in student government, law and medicine in university.

I hate that there are people who think my sons don't deserve things that affirm them as male because of the "sins of the father" didn't also affirm females in the same way historically. We have had a culture of affirming girls to the detriment of boys for a long time now. And I personally think it's great that this book is out there and that it is named the Dangerous Book for Boys if it leads even one boy to shut off the Nintendo and explore it's pages because it affirms so many ways to be a boy.

Karen
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post #36 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by alima View Post
I don't have any problem with the gender thing. Having struggled to raise a boy (who's very much a boy's-boy, think Pig-Pen crossed with the Tasmanian Devil) in a post-feminist, very pc neighborhood, where "boy's stuff" is almost a dirty word, it's really nice to see something about boys world being celebrated.

I totally agree, I have two boys and my older one is very much into everything sterotypically "boy" and I can tell it makes some people I know uncomfortable. I get so tired of that. It's who he is, and I'm not going to discourage it, just because it's not PC (just as I wouldn't discourage him from doing more traditionally "feminine things" if that where his interests lay).
post #37 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by granolapunk View Post
it just seems to me like you are perpetuating the problem by not allowing your dd's to have something that is 'for boys'.
Good point. I prefer to think of it as not perpetuating gender myths.

So I asked one of my DD which book she would rather have, by reading the description of what each book included, and she said the [boy] book. I then asked here which she would rather have, one that said it's for boys, or one that said it's for girls. She said the Girl book. I then told her that the girl book had the stuff inside that she was less interested in, and she said that she still wanted that one.

Oh, fickle child.
post #38 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by BurgundyElephant View Post
I'm not going to buy them a GREAT book (because I agree that it sounds great) that is marketed to boys! What message does that pass - "Hey! Here's this great book with lots of cool stuff inside but just ignore that it says it's for boys on the cover."
I'm with you. My 11 and 9 year old DDs would be offended that all this cool stuff is labeled as being "for boys." The sexism of the past isn't cute or funny to them, but just icky.

I don't care if other people like it. I'm not knocking it. I'm just saying that my DDs would be offended by the sexist title.
post #39 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by BurgundyElephant View Post
It's NOT silly. I'm not going to buy them a GREAT book (because I agree that it sounds great) that is marketed to boys! What message does that pass - "Hey! Here's this great book with lots of cool stuff inside but just ignore that it says it's for boys on the cover." Even explaining that it's reminiscent of old-fashioned books isn't acceptable, why still the sexism today? I'm not going to support an author, or a publishing house, that pushes this agenda.

FWIW, Yes, I do have both genders in my house, I have two daughters and one son. My son doesn't play with gender specific things, nor do my girls.

I'm really not trying to be snarky about this...
I agree with granolapunk. The book was written by a man who wanted to pass on some skills and stories to boys but no where does it say that girls can't enjoy it. He's not even definining these particular items as being of the male domain. He's simply cobbled together some things he thinks will speak to boys - and frankly they do. But they also may speak to girls. It's not about sexism - if that were the case only boys would be allowed to read it.
IMO I think it is far more disempowering to pass on to our children the message that the title of a book or the opinion of one person (in this case the author) is enough to influence how they define themselves or that they shouldn't have access to something simply because of what its called. It leads down the silly path of androgenizing everyone and everything. Did you allow your kids to read Wizardology - because the title implies for boys only - as does Harry Potter if you think about it.
It's cool with me if you don't want to buy it or support the author. I just think it's the wrong hill to plant the feminist flag.

Karen
post #40 of 216
What do you think a starting age is for this book? My oldest is 4.5. Should I wait a couple of yrs?

I could really care less about the title. If my girls (or boys) ask why it is called that, we will talk about it. I personally would have thought it was even cooler that I was doing stuff out of a 'boys' book.
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