The purpose of our blog is to discuss topical issues, stories, and situations, as well as to share what we are up to and new ways for you to get involved. We are always searching for possible answers to the question: Why is a girl's worth culturally and historically relative?

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Beyond Three Cups of Tea...


Photo: Central Asia Institute

In the latest press release by the US State Department, ‘Advancing the Rights of Women and Girls: Keys to a Better Future for Afghanistan’, the obvious is revealed. The notion that men and women need to work together to build a better country reads like it is something revolutionary and it applies to the entire world, not just Afghanistan. Although well intentioned, the new Women’s Action Plan for Afghanistan is filled with fantastical hopes.

It seems they have finally read their stocking stuffer copy of Three Cups of Tea. 
This book tells of Greg Mortenson's amazing story about being saved by villagers after a failed attempt to climb K2 and being shown gracious kindness in the most inhospitable of places. Deeply moved by the lack of educational resources, especially for girls, Mortenson has dedicated his life to the mission of bettering their lives through building schools, in the mountains and other remote regions of Afghanistan and Pakistan.

To date, his organization, Central Asia Institute has built over 130 schools. Ironically in the two countries the United States is now engaged in warfare. Mortenson promotes peace his way; the US government has promotes something else, their way. While he has become an unofficial advisor to the top US military generals in the region, the government (and public) in general seems to lag behind in their want to understand what is really happening.

As the State Department claims, "there is much to be done," which is more than an absurd understatement. Yet it seems that one man in a kaftan has had a more positive impact than 70,000 in fatigues.

Watch Greg Mortenson on Bill Moyers Journal.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Girls Book Blog

January 2010 has been a major growth spurt for Girl Museum. We launched the Girls Book Blog--a book review site for girls to share the books that they love with each other.

While this is a pilot project, we have received excellent feedback. So far, the girl bloggers have reviewed To Kill a Mockingbird, The Goose Girl, Utterly Me, Clarice Bean, The Mysterious Benedict Society Series, and The Fran that Time Forgot from the Franny K. Stein, Mad Scientist series.

Feel free to comment and share your thoughts about these books. If you have girls in your world who would like to participate, send us an email.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Protect the Girls of Haiti


photo credit: Le Foyer des Filles de Dieu

The girls of Haiti have always existed in threatened state, but never more than now. With their orphanages and other refuges destroyed, girls are at their most physically vulnerable.

In a country where rape only became a criminal offense in 2005, the current environmental crisis and humanitarian disaster will no doubt allow for crimes and victims that will never appear in the courts or the statistics. This earthquake has put a spotlight on a place with a long history of socio-economic troubles, deep-seeded government corruption and terrible human rights abuses, especially for girls and women.

As always, to survive and rebuild often falls to the women of a country, and organizations like MADRE are especially important to protect them.
So think of them and their children when you write your check.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The Bachelor State

China’s family planning policies have created unfathomable statistics.

Clearly, the ‘One Child’ strategy for slowing the population growth was a misguided short term solution that has created an even bigger long term crisis.

Although the 'Care for Girls' program is in effect in some rural areas, the damage has been done and it is not just China’s problem.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Girl Museum is going to Japan



Hello folks!

We are very excited to announce that Girl Museum will be in Japan for the week leading up to Hina Matsuri (Girls' Day) on March 3rd.

So far the plan is to visit Tokyo, Katsuura, Kyoto and Wakayama for their festivities and shrines.

On Saturday February 27th, we will be at the Children's Castle in Tokyo for wooden hina (doll) making.

If you would like to learn more about Girls' Day, our exhibition will open in July 2010, so remember to check in at Girl Museum.

Also if anyone has any suggestions of places to be or people to meet, let us know.

Dōmo arigatō!!

Monday, January 4, 2010

2010 - The Year of the Girl

Well, that is what we are calling it.

On day 5, things are all go, go, go here at Girl Museum Headquarters.

To get an idea of a few things we are working on, our upcoming exhibition, 'Across Time and Space: Multicultural Representations of Girls in the Arts' is in production.

Our new project, 'Girls Book Blog', will be launching later this month--we will provide more details and links soon.

I am preparing for my journey to Japan to celebrate Hina Matsuri/Girls' Day on March 3rd. This is to research and document our upcoming exhibition scheduled to open this summer.

Our 'Girl Groups' and 'Play' projects are coming along, but we need to hear from you to help make the shows relevant.

That is just a bit of the fun stuff we are up to.

As always, please let us know if you have any suggestions or contributions for us.

-Ashley E. Remer
Head Girl
Girl Museum Inc.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Really?

Only day two of 2010 and the stories about girls in the news keep getting more surreal and tragic. Be it a baby farm in Nigeria, the revelation that Hollywood (and audiences) love girls abused or in danger, or calls to participate in exploiting pregnant teenagers, there is a great deal of work to be done to protect and nurture our girls. Even the act of googling 'girl' is a dangerous process, the Internet is not a safe place. Even those who claim to be protecting girls can be misguided at best. But there is always hope and action.

A simple start is just getting informed. The assault on girlhood comes in many forms in every culture. Learn about protecting girls in domestic labor in Haiti. Read Packaging Girlhood by Mary Lamb and Lyn Mickel Brown.

Find out ways you can start changing the world with your daughters.
Let us know what you think about the state of girlhood in 2010.