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St. Michael's College

Publication Date

Spring 2012

Program Name

Netherlands: International Perspectives on Sexuality and Gender

Abstract

This report is the result of a month-long qualitative examination of the various attitudes held by Dutch teenage girls on feminine behavior and presentation. Background research included examining work written about Dutch women and Dutch teen girl culture, as well as analyzing two Dutch teen magazines, Meiden and Girlz. I interviewed five Dutch girls from the ages of 13 to 17 about the acceptability and prevalence of femininity and “girliness” among them and their peers. I concluded that these Dutch girls believe that it is most acceptable for a girl to act in a certain way based on her gender: not too girly and not too masculine. My subjects also expressed dissatisfaction with the current role for adult women in the Netherlands. I also found among my subjects that they commonly labeled girls in general as gossipy and bitchy and were likely to put them down for certain feminine behaviors. This led me to discuss the concept of internalized misogyny as it related to my subjects’ attitudes towards girls in general.

Disciplines

Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies

 

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