AfterEllen Podcast: Where Have All the Tomboys Gone?

Lisa Selin Davis, Tomboy

On this week’s podcast we spoke with Lisa Selin Davis, the author of Tomboy, a book that examines the rise and fall of gender nonconformity in girls. It used to be that tomboys, little girls who roughhoused, played outside, were bold and brave were common. But nowadays the pink and blue boxes children are shuffled into are more restrictive than ever. We spoke about why  waves of feminism are met with backlash, and how this backlash manifests in stricter gender roles for children. Davis points out that during periods of successful feminist activism, we see far greater social acceptance for boys and girls to play with each other, and with toys or in activities that are traditionally associated more with one sex than the other.

Tomboy on the AfterEllen podcast

So what’s this mean for girls today? What’s with all the pink legos and hyper-sexualized Bratz dolls? Are tomboys really boys? Are they all going to grow up to be lesbians? Can parents chill on the gender reveals and just let their kids be free? We cover all of this and a lot more hot takes in this episode, which you can listen to below, or anywhere you usually stream your podcasts.