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Smart GirlsSuccess, School, and the Myth of Post-Feminism$
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Shauna Pomerantz and Rebecca Raby

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780520284142

Published to California Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520284142.001.0001

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Fitting In or Fabulously Smart?

Fitting In or Fabulously Smart?

(p.57) Chapter Three Fitting In or Fabulously Smart?
Smart Girls

Shauna Pomerantz

Rebecca Raby

University of California Press

In this chapter, we explore tensions in smart girls’ lives by focusing on how girls and boys negotiate gender and peer culture. While girls are deemed to be the new dominant sex in education and beyond, we offer stories that illustrate the strategies girls used in order to negotiate their smart identities. We explore the challenges of a smart girl identity in relation to popularity, sexual desirability, fitting in, and standing out. We also explore the strategic negotiations of girls in contrast to boys, who used different tactics to manage their academic success.

Keywords:   boys, gender, peer culture, femininity, masculinity, popularity, fashion, dumbing down, sports, humor

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