Due to popular demand, we are hosting a second edition of Let’s Talk Intersectionality ‘Feminism and Comics’! We hope that anyone who couldn’t make it to the first one is able to come on September 15th. There is clearly a need for spaces to have these conversations. The sign up list for this free event will open on Friday, Aug. 28th via Eventbrite and posted on the Facebook event page here.
At one time, the pairing of feminism and comics may have seemed antithetical in mainstream comics. The assumption of the default male reader (who was also assumed to be heterosexual, cisgender and probably white) dictated much of the portrayal of women (as fantasy or plot devices) and feminism in comics. Female superheroes were derived as an afterthought to their male counterparts (She-Hulk, Superwoman, Batgirl, Spider-woman…) or women featured as victims, regularly tortured and raped to propel the action for the male lead. Recently, a sea change has emerged: feminist portrayals of heroes have infiltrated the mainstream. Unbeatable Squirrel Girl, Captain Marvel, Ms Marvel, A-Force, Black Canary in the superhero genre as well as ODY-C, Bitch Planet, Saga and lots more great graphic novels.
Feminist zines, small press and underground comics have long been a subversive form for challenging sexism. The Bechdel Test was born from the groundbreaking comic strip Dykes to Watch Out For and small press (and web comics) continues to be fruitful and vibrant territory for feminism and comics (also see zines published by the Feminist Library, One Beat zines, Global Grrrl Zine Network).
Let’s Talk Intersectionality is a monthly reading group at the Feminist Library that explores feminist texts and issues from an intersectional perspective. For a special edition of Let’s Talk Intersectionality, we will be hosting a salon-style discussion about the state of feminism in comics. Co-hosted by Lauren Murphy and Lisa Woynarski.
No prior knowledge of comics necessary. All welcome.
There is no required reading for this session as we will be having a broad conversation about feminism and comics. If you would like to do some reading, here are some suggestions:
The Essential Dykes to Watch Out For by Alison Bechdel
Sally Heathcote: Suffragette By Mary Talbot, Kate Charlesworth, and Bryan Talbot
Henni by Miss Lasko-Gross
Lily Renee, Escape Artist by Trina Robbins
Kiki De Montparnasse by Catel Muller and Jose-Luis Bocquet
Tina’s Mouth: An Existential Comic Diary by Keshni Kashyap and Mari Araki
This One Summer Mariko Tamaki and Jillian Tamaki
Zines and Anthologies:
Feminist Library Zines
One Beat Zines
Comic Book Slumber Party
Global Grrrl Zine Network
Love & Rockets
The Wicked + The Divine
And many, many more amazing things! We’d love to hear your recommendations over on the Facebook event page here