How could the Observer have missed this trend piece? Newsweek introduces us to Nerd Girls. It's a nerd trend: the Observer already covered hot male nerds "of steel," and Benjamin Nugent just published American Nerd: Story of My People. But girls have been overlooked thus far. (Well, sort of: there are at least two nerd-themed girl pinup sites.) If you haven't heard, some girls can do math and are smart and cute and totally worth a trend piece!
The Nerd Girls may not look like your stereotypical pocket-protector-loving misfits-their adviser, Karen Panetta, has a thing for pink heels-but they're part of a growing breed of young women who are claiming the nerd label for themselves. In doing so, they're challenging the notion of what a geek should look like, either by intentionally sexing up their tech personas, or by simply finding no disconnect between their geeky pursuits and more traditionally girly interests such as fashion, makeup and high heels.
Ah, the "smart or sexy?" question that has haunted women for decades. YES YOU CAN BE BOTH.
These girl geeks aren't social misfits; their identities don't hinge on outsider status. They may love all things sci-tech, but first and foremost they are girls-and they've made that part of their appeal. They've modeled themselves after icons such as Tina Fey, whose character on "30 Rock" is a "Star Wars"-loving, tech-obsessed, glasses-wearing geek, but who's garnered mainstream appeal and a few fashion-magazine covers. Or on actress Danica McKellar, who coauthored a math theorem, wrote a book for girls called "Math Doesn't Suck" and posed in a bikini for Stuff magazine. Or even Ellen Spertus, a Mills College professor and research scientist at Google-and the 2001 winner of the Silicon Valley "Sexiest Geek Alive" pageant.
Revenge of the Nerdette [Newsweek]