Review: Pledged the Secret Life of Sororities by Alexandra Robbins

Pledged the Secret Life of Sororities by Alexandra RobbinsPledged the Secret Life of Sororities by Alexandra Robbins

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Alexandra Robbins wanted to find out if the stereotypes about sorority girls were actually true, so she spent a year with a group of girls in a typical sorority. The sordid behavior of sorority girls exceeded her worst expectations — drugs, psychological abuse, extreme promiscuity, racism, violence, and rampant eating disorders are just a few of the problems. But even more surprising was the fact that these abuses were inflicted and endured by intelligent, successful, and attractive women.

Why is the desire to belong to a sorority so powerful that women are willing to engage in this type of behavior — specially when the women involved are supposed to be considered “sisters”? What definition of sisterhood do many women embrace? Pledged combines a sharp-eyed narrative with extensive reporting and the fly-on-the-wall. (Goodreads)

Pledged the Secret Life of Sororities by Alexandra Robbins follows 4 different sorority women Vicki, Sabrina, Amy and Caitlin. Each woman has her own quirks and shocking “secrets”. Robbins goes undercover and follows these women around during a typical school year and tries getting inside the mind of sorority women, what they do, how they do it, and why they do it. She attends conferences and workshops that are open to the public, interviews anyone willing to talk to her and confronts issues such as alcohol use, drug use, hazing, date rape, student/teacher relations, etc.

Overall it was a decent journalism job but things have either severely changed since she did this or it’s so underground that I don’t know about most of it. Some things like alcohol and drugs happen to all college students regardless of Greek affiliation or not. So that bit isn’t as shocking. I suppose it’s a good book to read if you’re considering joining a sorority because a few of the girls do battle the loneliness and isolation bits even after they are initiated and that can and does happen to some people. I did find the information on traditionally black sororities very interesting. I also wish the secret sorority information would have been left out.

3 stars

xoxo Gwen

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