Date of Award

3-29-2010

Degree Type

Closed Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Women's Studies

First Advisor

Megan Sinnott - Committee Chair

Second Advisor

Julie Kubala - Committee Member

Third Advisor

Mary E. Hocks - Committee Member

Fourth Advisor

Susan Talburt - Committee Member

Abstract

This thesis analyzes the teen-targeted website gURL.com, which is committed to providing safe space for young girls to explore different aspects of girlhood. I primarily focus on girls’ comments and conversations posted on the message boards in order to trace how teens mediate and extend the borders of the popular conceptualizations of contemporary girlhood. I interpret young women's online activities within the discursive framework of the complex relation between Girl Culture and feminism. Without overvaluing the freedom of online environments, I assume that the relatively unregulated space of the Internet enables girls to step outside the dominant stereotypes and discover alternative modes of doing feminist activism. I argue that these new venues of political engagement are adequate ways of resistance within the specific era of postmodern global capitalism.

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