Ink-Stained Amazons and Cinematic Warriors: Superwomen in Modern Mythologyby Jennifer K. Stuller Published 02 Feb 2010
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|Publisher||I. B. Tauris|
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In this comprehensive history, inquiry, critique, and reference guide, Stuller argues that Superwomen, from Wonder Woman to Charlie’s Angels, are more than just love interests or sidekicks who stand by their supermen. She shows how the female hero in modern mythology has broken through the traditional boy's club barrier to reveal the pivotal role of high-heeled crimefighters in popular culture. Chapter topics include love and compassion, spies and sexuality, daddy’s girls, and the complicated roles of superwomen who are also mothers. The book also includes a glossary of modern mythic women, as well as a foreword by acclaimed cultural commentator Roz Kaveney, author of Superheroes! Capes and Crusaders in Comics and Films.
"Ink-Stained Amazons and Cinematic Warriors: Superwomen in Modern Mythology" Reviews
Are you a feminist? Are you a genre-TV-and-movie geek? Do you ever ask yourself 'what would Buffy do'? Then you need to read this book. Stuller concentrates on TV and graphic novels for the most part, and it is /kind/ of depressing that almost every show in this book has been cancelled...and we're now innundated with gossip girls and pretty little liars who are most spectacularly lame in the superpower department.Still, relive the glory days of Buffy, Xena, Dark Angel et al and hope some new blood is inspired to make women super again.
Ink-Stained Amazons is a very comprehensive study and critique on female superheroes of the past and present. As someone who has virtually no prior knowledge of comics at all, let alone the few involving female heroes, at times, the book was a little overwhelming; it was hard to keep track of who wrote what, and all the stories of the various characters discussed. That being said, it was an interesting read, since I am a female librarian and do worry about the portrayal (or lack thereof) of strong female characters in the various forms of media that I purchase.
In terms of it's appeal to the YA reader, unless the reader has a passion for the topic, I don't think he/she would get through the whole book. To me, the book reads more like a text for a college class in gender studies, rather than something that a teen would just pick up to read through in their free time. It's not poorly written; it's just too much.
Pretty standard. Mostly history, with a few insights into thematic concerns (no discussion of form at all).
For a geek and female superhero fan and reader, this book was a very exciting amd entertaining compilation of the reasons why more female leads are needed. As a Latin American woman, the validation that more characters like me should be developed for the sake of diversity and equality is testament of how much farther we need to drive the feminism and civil rights movements to successfully change social norms amd expectations. The book has many examples of superwomen in modern films, TV shows and literature, especially comics, and presents a cohesive argument in regards to the value and meaning of all the heroines described in its chapters. This is a must read for women interested in the genres mentioned above and for those who want to be introduced to the history of female super or extraordinary characters. Highly recommended for men who want to understand how sexism and violence affecta comics and why the medium is also a "girl" thing.
This is more than just a review and exposition of superheroines. That takes in a lot. This book presents, yes, the usual excursion through the comic-book world of the heroine, examines which heroines have worked, which ones showed promise and failed (Marvel's 'The Claws of the Cat', which I fondly remember, from the 1970s, among others), which ones were misguided, and, most significantly, presents a unifying feminist thesis by which to study this fascinating topic.
'Ink-Stained Amazons...' is not limited to the comic book realm, however. It follows the trail cut by B-movies and exploitation films, and makes the point that some of the most important progress in defining Women as independent and heroic was made there (thank you, Russ Meyer). It examines the first tentative steps in serials, films, and television (from hanger-on, like Lois Lane, to superheroines Wonder Woman and Princess Leia).
The most important part of this book, however, comes when Stuller asks the key question, 'Where do we go from here?" Having recovered from the reaction that set in during the Reagan years, she sees a new beginning in the new millennium. And she draws attention to a little film that I like a lot (and which was rather poorly received--mistakenly she believes): 'D.E.B.S.' The way forward is to be found in allowing Women to mentor Women. To allow Women to be the unique figures, pursuing their own goals independently of the wishes or guidance of Men. (This, was a temporary drawback for, for example, Sydney Bristow, who was shaped to a too-great degree by her father.) The important word in that question, for Stuller, is 'we'. Women must take the lead in shaping their own characters, their characters' lives and the media in which strong Women appear.
Too often in popular culture the heroes who are meant to inspire us are men, while women are relegated to being the sidekick, the moral support, or the damsel in dis-damn-dress. But fear not! In Ink-Stained Amazons and Cinematic Warriors: Superwomen in Modern Mythology, Jennifer K. Stuller explores what makes women heroic, the tropes that plague superwomen, and the many real-life superladies who are changing things for women in pop culture.
Ink-Stained Amazons and Cinematic Warriors is an excellent book to get you thinking about the superladies you admire and what makes them rock (and sometimes about how they could rock harder). It may also introduce you to some feminist icons you’ve been missing out on, such as Modesty Blaise and Dr. Catherine Gale, and it will definitely get you going on a wild ride through comics history.
Complete Review: http://www.paperdroids.com/2012/08/30...