Poster or Presentation Title

Fight Like a Girl

Student Author Information

Justin CummingsFollow

Access Type

Campus Access Only

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

Start Date

April 2019

Department

Communication Studies

Abstract

This thesis examined nine different comics: three from the 1940’s, three from the 1970’s-1980’s and three from the 2010’s. Each comic told an origin story for a female superhero or some kind of reintroduction of the character, such as a soft reboot or new book launch. This thesis determined which decade provided stronger feminist representation by analyzing the treatment of characters by their peers before and after gaining superpowers or their superhero identity, the gaining of their powers or identity, and the visual differences between their costume and civilian attire.

The result of this thesis was that all eras had examples of feminist representation based on that era’s wave of feminism, but that representation was much more obvious in the 1970’s-1980’s era and into the 2010’s, this change in representation was due to the medium having had time to mature and become a more diverse industry with room for more viewpoints and more writers contributing their beliefs and ideals.

Faculty Mentor(s)

Dr. Cheryl Jorgensen-Earp, Dr. Michael Robinson, Dr. Beth Savage

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Apr 10th, 4:30 PM

Fight Like a Girl

This thesis examined nine different comics: three from the 1940’s, three from the 1970’s-1980’s and three from the 2010’s. Each comic told an origin story for a female superhero or some kind of reintroduction of the character, such as a soft reboot or new book launch. This thesis determined which decade provided stronger feminist representation by analyzing the treatment of characters by their peers before and after gaining superpowers or their superhero identity, the gaining of their powers or identity, and the visual differences between their costume and civilian attire.

The result of this thesis was that all eras had examples of feminist representation based on that era’s wave of feminism, but that representation was much more obvious in the 1970’s-1980’s era and into the 2010’s, this change in representation was due to the medium having had time to mature and become a more diverse industry with room for more viewpoints and more writers contributing their beliefs and ideals.