When women describe growing up, their memories of childhood and adolescence are a rich blend of joy, pain, and discovery. Girls Like Us celebrates these special coming-of-age moments-as expressed through the words of over 40 prominent women of this century. Based on both original and published story, memoir, poetry, and song, famous and not-so-famous women from all areas of life share the rituals, games, and everyday moments that were unique to shaping their experiences of girlhood.
In Paula, Isabel Allende tells of her parents' ingenuity in allowing her to express her creativity; Amy Tan explores the life of a young girl and her relationship to her mother in The Joy Luck Club; a girl named Martha attempts to define truth in Marta Salinas' short story "The Scholarship Jacket." Whether autobiographical or fiction, many North American writers and poets visit rites-of-passage issues in their works, such as Bebe Moore Campbell's Sweet Summer, Margaret Atwood's Cat's Eye, and Georgie Anne Geyer's Buying the Night Flight. Likewise, mavericks-such as Faye Wattleton and Dolores Huerta-speak out on how their checkered childhood has shaped them into being the determined leaders they are today. Poetry and song lyrics complete the collection, as women like Ani Difranco and Joan Baez embrace expressions specific to gender, culture, and race.