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Amna Al Haddad (Eline Van Dam / Penguin Books).

Princess redefined

New children’s book chronicles the stories of 100 ‘Rebel Girls’

March 7, 2017

A new book of bedtime stories hopes to inspire girls to rebel against gender norms. Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls chronicles the achievements of 100 inspiring, real-life women and girls who doggedly pursued their dreams, according to the BBC.

With colorful illustrations and a jaunty tone, Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls shares the biographies of a group of diverse women from across the globe. The stories’ subjects range from prominent historical figures like Queen Elizabeth I, to modern icons like Nobel prize-winner Malala Yousafzai, to lesser-known trailblazers like Amna Al Haddad, a journalist-turned-Olympic weightlifter from the United Arab Emirates.

The book was written by Italian authors Elena Favilli and Francesca Cavallo. The duo ran a successful crowdfunding campaign for the project in 2016, raising about $1 million.

Favillli told the BBC that she and Cavallo came up with the idea for Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls after becoming frustrated by traditional children’s stories. “Children’s books have not changed since we were children — the men are still the protagonists and the women are still the princesses,” she said.

Academic research points to the need for exposing young girls to alternative narratives. A recent study found that by the time girls reach the age of 6, they are less likely than boys to view their own gender as innately brilliant.

Favilli also told the BBC that she hopes the book teaches girls that “it is OK and even a good thing for women to break rules” on the path to pursuing their dreams.

Read the full story at the BBC.


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