Chorleywood Literary Festival: Melissa Benn & Hadley Freeman


As part of the Chorleywood Literary Festival, they lined up a number of author talks to promote a range of books currently available.

I was attracted by the idea of the talk “What should we tell our daughters?”

Recently there has been a lot in the media about how women are portraying themselves. Miley Cyrus is a classic example of this. She has made a few questionable decisions lately and it has sparked numerous debates. This could be clever marketing, manipulation from her management or just a young girl doing what some young girls do. Personally I’d like to think that she is making her own decisions on the way she dresses and behaves and is happy with the choices she is making.

The talk was attended by quite a few teachers who were looking for some advice on encouraging the girls they teach.  That they would give up their spare time to discuss their concerns in an open forum says to me these are the kind of teachers we need to be supporting.

Whilst I don’t have children myself (yet) I do have friends and relatives with young girls and I want to be able to help them if and when the time comes with an open mind.

The world has changed so much in a relatively short space of time with the invent of mobile phones and social media and I fear that some of the more vulnerable people get caught up in the negative side of these inventions.  When used responsibly the internet and social media is a valuable tool for meeting people and learning but there are darker sides to it that inexperienced people fall foul of.

Melissa and Hadley asked some interesting questions and gave me plenty to think about in my own life. I brought both books at the end of the talk so I could further understand their points.  Whilst I might not agree with all of their thoughts anyone promoting a discussion on pressing women’s issues in a healthy and positive way as this was can only be a good thing.


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