Thursday, June 2, 2011

A quote that changed my understanding of Wonder Woman

Here's a quote about Wonder Woman from Ragnell at her blog, Written World:

Because they don't get Wonder Woman. They don't understand how women can withdraw from men and not spend all of their time thinking about men, holding a grudge against men, and plotting to come out and hurt/maim/kill men. They don't get that women might spend their lives away from men and be perfectly happy and not obsessed with men in some way.

They don't get that the point of Wonder Woman is that sexism in our society was holding women back, and that Diana is what a woman who had never suffered institutionalized sexism can be. Instead, Wonder Woman only makes sense if she's lopping off heads and ranting about how terrible men are.
(emphasis mine)

I don't really have anything to add, except that it kind of blew my mind. I haven't read a lot of Wonder Woman, but I like the character and have always sided with the fans who are upset when she's portrayed as a raging anti-man "feminist." But until I read this, I'm not sure I really grasped exactly why this was so wrong, how it's a fundamental misunderstanding of the character and not just something that happens to offend my sensibilities.

It's such a simple yet profound idea, and I'd never seen it expressed so succinctly and eloquently before.


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