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Becoming Myself: Reflections on Growing Up Female [Bargain Price] [Paperback]

Willa Shalit

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Paperback, Bargain Price, April 17 2007 --  
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Book Description

April 17 2007
"The women in this collection were asked, simply, to recall a significant memory of growing up female. They responded generously, with intimate stories of their lives. Instead of the superficial prepackaged blurbs of TV sound bites and press releases, they told stories from their hearts; they told secrets never spoken before. They revealed themselves through stories of personal confusion and discovery, pain and overcoming, rejection and celebration."
--From Willa Shalit's Introduction

The stories shared by these sixty-seven remarkable women -- writers, actors, musicians, journalists, activists -- include:

--Kate Winslet on the media's eagerness to distort women's images.
--Zane on her belief in a woman's right to satisfaction.
--Lillian Vernon on being a trailblazing entrepreneur.
--J.K. Rowling on the transformation wrought by giving birth.

Filled with sparkling insights and powerful reflections, Becoming Myself is a gift for every woman.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Hyperion; 1 edition (April 17 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401308953
  • ASIN: B005Q7KHB4
  • Product Dimensions: 20.1 x 13.2 x 2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 249 g

Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Sculptor and Vagina Monologues producer Shalit asked a group of celebrities and writers to recall a significant memory of growing up female. The result is an uneven collection of 67 short pieces, with unfocused or perfunctory contributions by such notables as J.K. Rowling, Kate Winslet, Vanessa Williams, Brooke Shields and Janis Ian. A few of the pieces, such as those by Patti LaBelle, Rue McClanahan and Lily Tomlin are frustratingly short. Longer and more literary pieces by Joyce Carol Oates, Kitty Carlisle Hart and Tawni O'Dell stand out as moving, thought provoking and completely to the point. Oates writes about her disturbing experiences as a sexually naïve undergraduate in the late 1950s trying to navigate the chaotic rituals of a fraternity party at which her drunken female peers were taking sexual risks. In an affectionately comic piece, actress Hart, born into a comfortable New Orleans family in 1910, describes how she suffered and evolved under a domineering but loving mother, while O'Dell paints a stark picture of herself as a tough, sensitive 10-year-old in the 1970s coal-mining region of western Pennsylvania, coming to grips with the critical difference in girls' and boys' natures. (Apr. 18)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Willa Shalit is the daughter of Gene Shalit and was the producer for The Vagina Monologues, which became a global phenomenon. She is also the co-founder and first Executive Direct of V-Day, the worldwide movement to end violence against women that grew out of the play. It was named one of Fortune's 100 Best American Charities of 2002. Shalit is also an internationally recognized sculptor and is the founder of The Touch Foundation, creating the Please Touch! Exhibition, which allowed the sight-impaired for the first time to "see" people of all races as well as famous people whose face they had only imagined. Shalit is the subject of the Emmy-winning PBS documentary Willa: Behind the Mask, and author of the book Lifecast: Behind the Mask.

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Amazon.com: 4.6 out of 5 stars  8 reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book for every woman in the process of "becoming herself." May 14 2006
By F. Bergen - Published on Amazon.com
Great book for every woman in the process of "becoming herself." This is a how-to guide to womanhood by women who have walked the walk and are speaking from personal experience. Loved the intimate stories in this book that reveal the most personal lives of great women with autobiographical essays by JK Rowling, Kate Winslet, Maya Angelou and many others, aged 24 (Jamie Lynn Sigler) to 94 (Kitty Carlisle Hart). Contributors focus on personal subjects we all share: family, emotional growth, joys and sorrows. I read the book in random order: just opening it anywhere and reading the story on that page. I love being able to 'browse' through a book like this. The pieces are really diverse which gave me the feeling of 'sitting around a kitchen table' with friends ... some share a lot, some a little. Some are more eloquent, some less. But all feel safe enough to reveal the tender realities of life that are usually held private. Since reading it, the voices of the women come to mind when I least expect it, tapping me on the shoulder with words of wisdom. Great graduation gift or "any time" gift to for women of all ages.
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars becoming myself reflections on growing up female April 24 2006
By Janet K. Crozier - Published on Amazon.com
What a delightful book. Reading it is a little like being invited into living room or kitchen of some of the most fascinating women alive today. What a privilege it is to read and learn from Maya Angelou and to understand from her perspective the difference between growing up and growing old. Her wisdom is something I will read and reread.

I wondered who was the inspiration for Hermione in the Harry Potter books and was fascinated by the accounting of how and where the first book was written. An inspiration to all would-be writers. I was amazed by the age span and experiences of the women who shared their personal and often intimate details about growing up as a female in whatever city, town and family setting they were born into.

It's a book I will read, reread and share with my best friends and daughters.

Janet K. Crozier
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Becoming Myself - enlightening, inspiring, enriching! April 29 2006
By Spark - Published on Amazon.com
I love this book! I just received it as a birthday gift from a girlfriend. What a lovely book, filled with inspirational stories of women -- mostly famous. This is the perfect bedside book -- for moments when you want to read what other women have endured and enjoyed as they become themselves. I will share this book with my daughters and my girlfriends.
7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Graduation Present April 27 2006
By A Shalit - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book is a great graduation gift for any young women who you want to inspire to live a powerful life. In "Becoming Myself," 50 successful women (many famous, some not) talk about how they grew up and how they got where they are today by staying true to themselves. All the stories are different. Some are shocking, some are funny, some are sweet. All are wise and inspiring.
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Becoming Myself April 20 2006
By Jennifer Robbins - Published on Amazon.com
I loved loved loved this book. It's a real mix in every sense - different women of all ages and walks of life, with the anecdotes extremely varied. Yet there's unity in that everyone seemed to have a sense of their own strength and its source. There's of lot of sage advice contained. It's a great book for people of all ages, and an inspired gift for teenagers seeking role models. Bravo, Ms. Shalit.

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