Dr. Rebecca Hains

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“Am I Pretty or Ugly” Videos a Symptom of Toxic Media Culture

In recent years, young girls have been posting videos of themselves to YouTube, asking one question: “Am I pretty or ugly?” Over 500,000 of these videos are online, and they’re heart-wrenching to watch. In addition to being incredibly sad, these…

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Boys and girls and baby dolls

I am supposed to be working, but instead, I am eavesdropping as my four-year-old son, T., and his friend, N., play together with his two baby dolls, Sully and Buddy. T. is walking around with Sully under his shirt. N….

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A response to Mrs. Hall: Teaching our boys respect and self-control

“FYI (if you’re a teenage girl)“* came up in my facebook news feed a lot yesterday. It’s being shared with such enthusiasm that I was eager to read it. I hoped its advice for teenage girls about their facebook activities…

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“Princess park rangers” and “Space princesses”: Because gender stereotypes are inescapable, even on vacation.

The school year is starting. Families are returning home from their vacation travels with souvenirs and many fond memories; children are eager to tell their classmates what they did on their summer vacations. But unfortunately, many families’ travels brought them…

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Disney faces backlash over new “sexy” Merida; pulls new image from web site as a result

UPDATE, May 16, 2013: Disney has stated that 1. the 2D image was never on their official web site in the first place (though, oddly, it’s all over the official Australia/NZ version of the Disney Princess site–which may have been the source of any…

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Halloween and the rise of sexy costumes for women and girls

For years, families struck a balance between store-bought and homemade Halloween costumes. But these days, DIY Halloween costumes are out; store-bought costumes are an $2.87 billion business. What does this mean for consumers? Well, for one thing, we’re seeing a…

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Reimagining Disney Princesses with racial diversity: From Tumblr to D-Tech

A couple of weeks ago, a young woman named Lauren reimagined the white Disney Princess characters as women of color, posting recolored images of them on her Tumblr blog. Her inspired designs quickly made their way around the blogosphere. Responses ranged…

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