Although cynics may like to see he government’s policy for women in terms of the party’s internal power struggles, it will nevertheless be churlish to deny that it represents a pioneering effect aimed at bringing about sweeping social reforms. In its language, scope and strategies, the policy documents displays a degree of understanding of women’s needs that is uncommon in government pronouncements. This is due in large part to the participatory process that marked its formulation, seeking the active involvement right from the start of women’s groups, academic institutions and non-government organizations with grass roots experience. The result is not just a lofty declaration of principles but a blueprint for a practical program of action. The policy delineates a series of concrete measures to accord women a decision-making role in the political domain and greater control over their economic status. Of especially far-reaching impart are the devolution of control of economic infrastructure to women, notably at the gram panchayat level, and the amendment proposed in the Act of 1956 to give women comparcenary rights.
And enlightened aspect of the policy is its recognition that actual change in the status of women cannot be brought about by the mere enactment of socially progressive legislation. Accordingly, it focuses on reorienting development programs and sensitizing administrations to address specific situations as, for instance, the growing number of households headed by women, which is a consequence of rural-urban migration. The proposal to create an equal-opportunity police force and give women greater control of police stations is an acknowledgement of the biases and callousness displayed by the generally all-male law-enforcement authorities in case of dowery and domestic violence. While the mere enunciation of such a policy has the salutary effect of sensitizing the administration as a whole, it does not make the task of its implementation any easier. This is because the changes it envisages in the political and economic status of woman strike at the root of power structures in society and the basis of man-woman relationship. There is also the danger that reservation for women in public life, while necessary for their greater visibility, could lapse into tokenism or become a tool in the hands of vote seeking politicians. Much will depend on the dissemination of the policy and the ability of elected representatives and government agencies to reorder their priorities.
At which stage were the grass-root level organizations involved for the policy?
First introduced in 1927, The Hardy Boys Mystery Stories are a series of books about the adventures of brothers Frank and Joe Hardy, teenaged detectives who solve one baffling mystery after another. The Hardy Boys were so popular among young boys that in 1930 a similar series was created for girls featuring a sixteen-year-old detective named Nancy Drew. The cover of each volume of The Hardy Boys states that he author of the series is Franklin W. Dixon; the Nancy Drew Mystery Stories are supposedly written by Carolyn Keene. Over the years, though, many fans of both series have been surprised to find out that Franklin W. Dixon and Carolyn Keene are not real people. If Franklin W. Dixon and Carolyn Keene never existed, then who wrote The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew mysteries?
The Hardy Boys and the Nancy Drew books were written through a process called ghostwriting. A ghostwriter writes a book according to a specific formula. While ghostwriters are paid for writing the books, their authorship is not acknowledged, and their names do not appear on the published books. Ghostwriters can write books for children or adults, the content of which is unspecific. Sometimes they work on book series with a lot of individual titles, such as The Hardy Boys and the Nancy Drew series.
The initial idea for both The Hardy Boys and the Nancy Drew series was developed by a man named Edward Stratemeyer, who owned a publishing company that specialized in children’s book.
Stratemeyer noticed the increasing popularity of mysteries among adult, and surmised that children would enjoy reading mysteries about younger detectives with whom they could identify. Stratemeyer first developed each book with an outline describing the plot and setting. Once he completed the outline, Stratemeyer then hired a ghostwriter to convert it into a book of slightly over 200 pages. After the ghostwriter had written a draft of a book, he or she would send it back to Stratemeyer, who would make a list of corrections and mail it back to the ghostwriter. The ghostwriter would revise the book according to Stratemeyer’s instructions and then return it to him. Once Stratemeyer approved the book, it was ready for publication.
Because each series ran for so many years, Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys both had a number of different ghostwriters producing books; however, the first ghostwrites for each series proved to be the most influential. The initial ghostwriter for The Hardy Boys was a Canadian journalist named Leslie McFarlane. A few years later, Mildred A. Wirt, a young writer from lowa, began writing the Nancy Drew books. Although they were using prepared outlines as guides, both McFarlane and Wirt developed the characters themselves. The personalities of Frank and Joe Hardy and Nancy arose directly from McFarlane’s and wirt’s imaginations. For example, Mildred Wirt had been a star college athelete and gave Nancy similar athletic abilities. The ghostwriters were also responsible for numerous plot and setting details. Leslie McFarlane used elements of his small C fictional hometown.
Although The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew books were very popular with children, not everyone approved of them. Critics thought their plots were unrealistic and even far-fetched, since most teenagers did not experience the adventures Frank and Joe Hardy or Nancy Drew did. The way the books were written also attracted criticism. Many teachers and librarians objected to the ghostwriting process, claiming it was designed to produce books quickly rather than create quality literature. Some libraries – including the New York Public Library – even refused to include the books in their children’s collections. Ironically, this decision actually helped sales of his books, because children simply purchased them when they were unavailable in local libraries.
Regardless of the debates about their literary merit, each series of books has exerted an undeniable influence on American and even global culture. Most Americans have never heard of Edward Stratemeyer, Leslie McFarlane, or Mildred wirt, but people throughout the world are familiar with Nancy Drew and Frank and Joe Hardy.
Which of the following would be the best title for this passage?