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Girl

Girl

by Jamaica Kincaid

Sexuality and Sexual Identity Theme

In "Girl," sexuality is a big deal—just like it is in regular ol' life. But in "Girl," you're always in danger of becoming a "slut." It seems like anything from walking funny to having a bit of a fashion malfunction can earn you that title. Mom seems to know this from personal experience, and probably had the word "slut" thrown in her direction on more than one occasion. Maybe her advice will save Girl from such a fate. So ladies, walk that tightrope of appropriate sexuality carefully, or who knows what kinds of names they'll call you!

Questions About Sexuality and Sexual Identity

  1. Why is Mom convinced that Girl is a slut? What does that mean for her? What are the consequences to becoming a slut?
  2. Based on the text, what can you assume about Mom's sexual history? What's her relationship to the word "slut"?
  3. What, if anything, could Girl do to change her mom's opinion about her sexuality?

Chew on This

Try on an opinion or two, start a debate, or play the devil’s advocate.

Kincaid suggests that, in the West Indian culture of "Girl," sex is frowned upon.

In "Girl," sex itself isn't bad, but you can't let anyone know that you've had it.

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