In What I Told My Daughter, entertainment executive Nina Tassler has brought together a powerful, diverse group of women—from Madeleine Albright to Ruth Bader Ginsburg, from Dr. Susan Love to Whoopi Goldberg—to reflect on the best advice and counsel they have given their daughters either by example, throughout their lives, or in character-building, teachable moments between parent and child.
A college president teaches her daughter, by example, the importance of being a leader who connects with everyone—from the ground up, literally—in an organization. A popular entertainer and former child star urges her daughter to walk in her own truth, to not break glass ceilings if she yearns to nurture a family as a stay-at-home mother or to abandon a career if that’s her calling. One of the country’s only female police chiefs teaches her daughter the meaning of courage, how to respond to danger but more importantly how not to let fear stop her from experiencing all that life has to offer. A bestselling writer who has deliberated for years on empowering girls, wonders if we’re unintentionally leading them to believe they can never make mistakes, when “resiliency is more important than perfection.”
In a time when childhood seems at once more fraught and more precious than ever, What I Told My Daughter is a book no one concerned with connecting with a young girl can afford to miss.
I skimmed through this book on a short plane ride. This is a collection of little essays/letters/etc., so it's nice because you don't have to read it cover to cover. You can pick and choose from women you've heard of or titles that seem interesting. These women shared their own perspectives on what it means to raise empowered women. Some told specific stories about themselves and what they learned through their actions, while others told stories about their children and what their daughters taught them.
This little collection gave me hope. Change starts at home, at the family level, and if there are great women like this teaching their daughters to be great women, then the positive chain will continue as their children have children and so forth.
Thank you to Atria Books for providing me with a copy in exchange for my honest review.