I’m nursing a migraine this morning, but this cup of unsweetened mint tea is helping a lot…Colleen has posted the latest in her What a Girl Wants series; stop by and join our discussion of female superheroes—do girls still need to see powerful women represented in comics, novels, or film? Or does the hypersexualization of “chicks kicking a**” turn you off? I wrote about Octavia Butler, of course, which was easy to do since lately I’ve been discussing her legacy with another YA author. Here’s a little bit of my response to Colleen’s question:
Butler’s novels are compelling because it’s always the most vulnerable woman who’s destined to lead others to create a new kind of community; her black female protagonists are marked as deviant in some way, yet what others see as pathology, Butler transforms into power (or its potential). Black feminists of the ’70s saw the future in a similar way: those at the very bottom of society have the most to gain by restructuring social relations. Though I never read the comics, I do love the X-Men films (Wolverine—he’s Canadian!) in part because they’re based on that same idea: the persecuted and marginalized are deeply invested in, and best suited to effect, social change.
Don’t forget to stop by Amy’s SLJ blog to read the latest interview in the Writers Against Racism series: this week starts off with Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich.