Horror, scandal and moral panic! Obsession with the conduct of young women has permeated society for over a hundred years. Be it over flappers, beat girls, dolly birds or ladettes, public outrage at girls' perceived misbehaviour has been a mass-media staple with each changing generation. Eminent social historian Carol Dyhouse examines what it really meant to be a girl growing up in the swirl of twentieth-century social change in this detailed and empathetic history. She draws from a dazzling array of sources to piece together the story of girlhood, clearly demonstrating the value of feminism and other liberating cultural shifts in expanding girls' aspirations and opportunities, in spite of the controversy that has accompanied these freedoms. This is a sparkling, paramic account of the ever-evolving opportunities and challenges for girls, the new ways they have able to present and speak up for themselves, and the popular hysteria that has frequently accompanied their progress.
Carol Dyhouse is a social historian and currently a research professor of history at the University of Sussex. Her most recent book, Glamour: Women, History, Feminism was published by Zed Books in 2010. Longer term, her research has focused on gender, education and the pattern of women's lives in nineteenth- and twentieth-century Britain. Her books include Girls Growing Up in Late Victorian and Edwardian England; Feminism and the Family in England, 1890-1939; No Distinction of Sex? Women in British Universities, 1870-1939; and Students: A Gendered History.