Sidestepping Stereotypes

Alongside the pop-culture image of summer camps as frivolous playgrounds for food fights and panty raids lie insidious and maladaptive gender-role stereotypes. Boys’ camps are thought to be full of manly men whose superior upper-body strength and testosterone-saturated blood shape a culture of hazing, rough-and-tumble play and extreme competition. Girls’ camps are thought to be full of girly girls whose glossy nails, glossier smiles and dolled-up fashion hide a cliquey social hierarchy of queen bees, mean girls and suicidal social …

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