Friday, September 14, 2007

Alpha Girls: A Must Read

I just finished the book, Alpha Girls, written by Dan Kindlon--the author of "Raising Cain". The book was absolutely fascinating. I couldn't put it down. The dishes are piled high, my shower still awaits, and the big project my company is working on, well...the e-mails are still sitting there. Luckily, I just finished the book.

There were a couple of aspects to the book that interested me.

1. The profile of an alpha girl- what makes an "alpha girl" an alpha girl?

The profile of an alpha girl, that was given within the project methodology section, is as follows:

"School administrators were asked to choose one or two girls from each grade who met our alpha criteria--talented, high-achieving leaders."

Subquestion: are alpha girls faring better only in privileged, upper-class settings?

2. How alphas are faring in college and after college.

3. Did you know that, "In March 2005, the U.S. Congress passed a measure weakening Title IX"? (More info can be found at --according to the endnotes.)

4. The environmental impact of "EDCs" (Endocrine Disrupters) on sperm and the declining birth rate of males.

5. The difficult balance that women are still facing between work and family.

I highly recommend reading this book. Last night, as I fell asleep, I considered what it might be like if I were to truly be the breadwinner of a family. If the statistics are correct, this could easily be the case. I wouldn't really mind, unless he couldn't understand why I always needed to work (I've had this happen in the past).

I was also interested by this book because I went to The Ellis School, a place where alpha girls dominated and were encouraged to do so. My experiences after leaving Ellis have only made me more aware of the differences between alpha and non-alpha females. The reality that I had been in a rarified environment became very clear within my freshman year. It also put a lot of different worldviews that I have encountered in the past 7 years into a context. It discussed the changing philosophies within psychology and our general society dating back 50 years or more, the evolution of different waves of feminism, and the ever-changing statistics coming out about this topic. A must read for anyone even minimally interested in our society, gender differences, feminism, or the modern family and how it is changing. Four stars to this book.

-Agent Ska-


  1. What exactly does an alpha-girl mean in this book? Is it like alpha-male, ie aggressive, dominant, good looking, more likely to spread their genes? Or does it have to do with being the breadwinner or something?

    It doesn't have anything to do with alpha-kitties, does it?

  2. Have you read Princess Bubble?
    They were recently on The Today Show and this is the fairy tale I want my girls to read and believe.

  3. Bram, I have answered your question in the post.

    As for the Princess Bubble book- well, it looks better than others...but does she really have to be a flight attendant?!

    I agree with you that it is better than others...

  4. How would I go about joining the Pittsburgh Women's Blogging Society? Although I do not live in Pittsburgh, I adore Pittsburgh and do spend time there.

    Thank you.

    ~ Autrice