There were several things I understood by readin this article. But I would first like to begin by stating how much I connected with Isabel when I was a teen. I was solicitated in the train station when I was in high school; on my way home from school. I was also molested in the train station, but just like Isabel... I had all the words but felt silenced and the words just couldnt come out of my mouth. Something I understood is that normal young girls do not have images or stories where they can respond to their own sexual desires. Sexaul desire is seen in males and is also portrayed as uncontrollable and victimizing. Although Tolman tries to use Isabel to show her desire to know herself sexaully and etc; I feel that she somewhat fails because everything she experiences sexually is based on her victimization and a males sexual desire for her body. Tolman wants adolescent females to be able to express themselves through their sexual desires. She wants to raise awareness so these girls wouldn't be silenced by men and their society. One of Tolman's solutions was to speak to boys and girls about girls entitlement to their sexual desire. She believes by doing this, romance narratives that we are used to would be rewritten.
Futhermore, Tolman states that race and class determines the way sexuality is spoken about. White young women are seen as asexual while black young women are seen as sexual. Something I would like to know is how this conclusion was made. I know black women are portrayed negatively in Hip Hop. But the same couold be said about white women and Girls Gone Wild, Mardi Gras events and etc. I wanted her to provide evidence of this statement but she focuses soley on Isabel's experience. Something else that i didnt understand is how being a sexual subject differes from being asexual object. Aren't they both equally bad?
Below is a video of spoken word poetry. I chose it because I feel it describes a little of what Tolman discusses such as a young women being violated. It also shows how girls can use sexuality to their advantage which can often be a negative thing. This also shows how sexuality can affect you based on your class. I think this is a beauiful piece and hope you enjoy it.