Keywords for Children’s Literature by Jacqueline Reid-Walsh discusses a popular term, “girlhood.” Many factors contribute to the term girlhood such as age, geography, culture, and race. The meaning can vary depending on the perception of a specific individual. Some may view girlhood as the state of being a girl, collectively. A specific aspect of girlhood I found interesting was to be a virgin. A virgin is described as “not yet touched, used, or exploited”, it is meant to describe a person who has never had sexual intercourse.
A popular TV show, Jane the Virgin, explores both the concept of sex and girlhood linked. Jane Gloriana Villanueva was 10 years old when her grandmother described virginity to her as a flower. Once virginity was taken away, the flower was destroyed and never able to be put back together again. It was portrayed as a symbol of youthfulness in a sense. Both in what we looked at in class as well as the popular TV show, virginity can be seen as something that overtly describes girlhood. It can be viewed that once virginity gets taken away, it is the ultimate step out of girlhood and into being a woman. There is no going back after it is gone. The concept of virginity relating with girlhood has changed throughout time. Decades ago, “girls” entered womanhood by having sex at much earlier ages since they would get married off at young ages. Today, this concept varies as sex is seen as casual to some and serious to others. Girlhood can be lost at many varying ages as shown in the popular TV show and many times once virginity is lost… responsibilities can come with it.