Girls’ Life controversy: When feminism falls short

By Ciara Rouege


The publisher of Girls’ Life and Boys’ Life magazines has come under fire after celebrities Blake Lively and Amy Schumer criticized its editors for solely focusing on fashion, beauty and romance with its female readership while encouraging career exploration and self-discovery among males. Many are calling the content sexiest and say its in need of a major revamp.

In an episode of ‘Blackish’ all the children catch influenza, and then the mother falls ill while trying to care for them. Like any self-respecting television mom, Rainbow tries to fight through the virus. But, alas! She loses and the family is forced to lean on its last resort: Dre, the father.

Terrified, he answers the call. And like any American sitcom dad, Dre ass plants as a substitute-mom and the children’s healths are thrown into complete jeopardy.

Until, eureka! He finds a solution. Dre decides to stop acting like a mom and starts caring for his family dad-style. Cue hilarious montage. All the kids make a miraculous recovery. Roll credits.

What the hell does this half to do with a pre-teen girls’ magazine? Well, everything.

The problem is about parenting, the most gender-restrictive experience of human life. The solution, which emphasis the difference between gender equality and gender empowerment, is applicable to women in the work life, romantic relationships and social environments. Gender equality and gender empowerment are not interchangeable — or even interconnected.

Girls Life magazine remake

Graphic designer Katherine Young revised the cover of Girls’ Life magazine after the internet uproar. “I fixed it,” she wrote.

Girls’ Life Magazine editors shouldn’t be criticized for making a magazine that isn’t comparable to its male counterpart, but instead for failing to expose girls to the poignant elements of womanhood.

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