Elevate Difference

Reviews tagged girlhood

Rebel Girls: Youth Activism and Social Change Across the Americas

Of the many things I accomplished in high school, “leading a political uprising” was suspiciously absent. Yet around the world, teenage girls are organizing their own social revolutions, a trend largely undocumented and unanalyzed before Jessica Taft’s Rebel Girls: Youth Activism and Social Change Across the Americas.


Henna is a visceral cinematic experience that functions as an exercise in patience. Drawing from reflections on his own childhood growing up in a rapidly developing Abu Dhabi, Saleh Karama created the character of Henna (A’aesha Hamad), a curious eight-year-old girl through whose perspective we are invited to see the world. Henna lives in a fishing village in an unnamed Arab country.

Home Free

Books with young female characters who love books make my heart smile. Home Free by Sharon Jennings made my heart shine with a full-faced grin. Meet Leanna Mets. She loves books, aspires to be a writer, and is trying to figure out what life means. This alone is no easy task, but it’s especially hard as she’s trying to navigate her blossoming life under the strict and watchful eye of her conservative mother. Leanna just wants to feel free.

The Off Season

This book, the sequel to Murdock’s Dairy Queen, may be marketed for young adults, but it’s not the equivalent of Sweet Valley High or The Princess Diaries, as both the book and heroine D.J. Schwenk have their feet planted firmly in reality. D.J.

Mohawk Girls

Mohawk Girls is a beautifully written and directed documentary film by Tracey Deer. Released in 2006, Deer parallels the lives of three teenage girls living on a reservation just outside of Montreal, Canada to her own experiences while struggling to grow up in a world that fails to reach out to those not living within the main steam culture.

Mommy's Angel

Most savvy feminists can argue their way through complex social problems such as sexual violence, poverty and drug use. Most savvy feminists, though, could not articulate those issues though a fast-paced, sharply written story like Mommy’s Angel.

The Films of Su Friedrich, Vol. 3: Sink or Swim

Su Friedrich's Sink or Swim is a beautifully complex film that quietly sneaks up on the viewer, draws her in and, ultimately, leads her to a place of intimate introspection and intense analysis. The film follows Friedrich's development from "The Girl" to "The Woman" through a series of anecdotes involving her father.

Bento Box in the Heartland

Bento Box in the Heartland is a memoir that uniquely ties in the cultural experiences of protagonist and writer Linda Furiya with the foods of her Japanese heritage. Wedged between each chapter is a recipe of some of her favorite dishes, such as Chinese Home-Style Tofu and Japanese Pot Stickers.

Color Me Pink

The other day I was walking through a department store when a scent stopped me in my tracks: my mother’s makeup, a lá 1978. I recognized the smell as one-part foundation and one-part lipstick, two contraband goods I spent hours poring over in a locked bathroom, dazzled by the possibilities of a new and improved me. At the time I was only ten, forbidden to wear the barest hint of blush or even paint my nails, as some of my friends did.