From the Editors

Article excerpt

June 30, 2009.

Were you a Girl Scout, or maybe something else like it?

I was the latter. The organization I grew up in back in the 1960s was a more religious version, but clearly based on Scouting ideas and principles, with many similar activities that included, prominently, camping. I loved camp desperately--ours was a woodsy, lakefront one in Maine--and I lived to get there for a magical week or two every summer from age 12 to 15. And despite my organization's conservative religious connections. Camp C. gave me some of my first and best experiences of girl power and strong women's leadership--along with a lot of crazy fun, a taste for folk songs, and an extremely hard-won canoeing badge.

Remember the "Year of Girls' Studies" series that ran in Feminist Collections in 2007? Although we concentrated on the theme for just that year, we've since published a few more reviews related to the field of girls' studies. One of them is in this issue. Marcia Chatelain's "Girls' Studies and Girls' History: Bridging Disciplinary Divides," which begins on page 6, reviews two books, one of which, Growing Girls: The Natural Origins of Girls' Organizations, by Susan A. Miller, covers a lot of Girl Scout and Camp Fire Girl history.

Thinking about Girl Scout history inspired our illustrator, Miriam Greenwald, especially since her mother, Lillian, had been an active Scout leader in the 1930s. In this issue's cover drawing, the smiling leader on the left somewhat resembles Miriam's mother as she appeared in photographs from that era. …