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Ink-Stained Amazons and Cinematic Warriors: Superwomen in Modern Mythology
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Ink-Stained Amazons and Cinematic Warriors: Superwomen in Modern Mythology

3.97  ·  Rating Details ·  133 Ratings  ·  22 Reviews
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 ...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published February 2nd 2010 by I. B. Tauris (first published January 1st 2010)
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(showing 1-30)
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Aug 04, 2010 Pamela rated it really liked it
As I read Ink-Stained Amazons, I found myself relapsing into grad school behaviors. I read with a pen in hand, annotating and underlining constantly. And I found myself wishing that I'd had this book while I was still in school, because Stuller's astute observations about tough women would have worked perfectly in the last paper I wrote, an examination of Zoe and Kaylee from Firefly as feminist heroes.

This isn't the usual type of book that we review here at TDF, but on the other hand, it's perfe
Jayne Lamb
Aug 05, 2011 Jayne Lamb rated it really liked it
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 ...more
Natalie Cheetham
Feb 23, 2012 Natalie Cheetham rated it it was ok
Shelves: gstba-2012
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 ...more
Dec 28, 2015 Whitney rated it it was ok
Pretty standard. Mostly history, with a few insights into thematic concerns (no discussion of form at all).
Oct 21, 2016 Jessica rated it it was amazing
Shelves: master-s-thesis
I adored this book. It broke down tropes and explained why we need more women in our media. It compared fathers with mothers, talked about women making myth, and covered a variety of shows from Buffy to Alias to X-Files to Xena to mention of The Powerpuff Girls. A quick read, but worth the effort.
Sep 10, 2014 Rosa rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Young adults interested in feminism and pop culture, Joss Whedon fans
Enjoyable if fairly light reading. It's somewhat lopsided, spending a lot more time on certain media and characters while others are barely - if at all - touched upon: it primarily examines super-powered female characters in mainstream film, television, and "big two" comic books, with very little attention to literature and none to theater or video games. That's to be expected from a book taking on such a huge topic and can hardly be considered a flaw, except perhaps one of misrepresentation.

Donald Luther
Sep 13, 2013 Donald Luther rated it really liked it
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
Dec 03, 2014 Staci rated it liked it
This is a good, critical analysis of warrior women (and their equivalent) in comics, TV, and movies. This book is more in-depth and critical than some others on the subject but it is also somewhat limited for that as well. Although Stuller does go into depth about obvious inclusions like Wonder Woman, Buffy, and Xena (and, somewhat surprisingly, Dark Angel), she is somewhat light on some others like Lara Croft and Firefly/Serenity. She doesn't even mention the Underworld or Resident Evil series. ...more
May 24, 2015 Christina rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book, which was about the role of female superheroes in pop culture throughout the 20th and 21st century. It discussed the comics, movies, and TV shows in which female heroes are portrayed well and those in which the portrayals are needlessly demeaning, infantilizing, objectifying, or violent, and has given me a long list of new shows I want to watch! It has also made me interested in reading comics now, so that I can examine the way women are portrayed in the different ...more
Paper Droids
Sep 04, 2012 Paper Droids rated it really liked it
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 exce
Jan 10, 2013 Jackie rated it it was amazing
Shelves: feminism
Okay, let me just say that this book was absolutely fantastic. I loved reading about the history of heroes like Wonder Woman, and I loved exploring with the author the way more modern heroes - like Buffy Summers, Max Guevara, Barbara Gordon, etc - help us define heroic meaning in our own lives. I grew up watching shows such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Xena: Warrior Princess, but I was too young then to put together how formative these influences were in my feminist leanings, or how they've ...more
Dec 16, 2010 Sarah rated it liked it
More like 3.5. A breezy read that does not delve too deep into anything (i.e., makes good arguments in some places, doesn't make any arguments at all in other places). It was fun to learn about the creator of the Wonder Woman comics, and I would like to find a book about him. Probably the only difference between this and other books of this nature is that it throws the TV show Dark Angel (starring Jessica Alba) into the mix alongside Wonder Woman, Xena, and Buffy. Stuller also is a big proponent ...more
Katelyn Patterson
Mar 01, 2010 Katelyn Patterson rated it liked it
This book points you in the direction of different books, comics, movies and television shows that display women in a good (or bad) light and discuss how and why. Several I have seen so the brief synopsis wasn't really necessary... except when citing specific scenes or dialogue which I really liked. I am going to check out some things I haven't seen (Aeon Flux, the Avengers) and read (Birds of Prey) though. There are chapters and sections within the book but I didn't feel like it was organized ...more
Aug 08, 2011 Maria rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
All the "geek girl" furor pre- and post Comic Con has gotten into my brain. This book was an interesting study on on the representation of "super women" - in comics, movies, and on television. It was fascinating to see some of the examples of how things have changed over time, with an ebb and flow in both positive and negative directions.

I have a lot of "feminist" thoughts churning around in my brain, and eventually they'll make it into some posts. Hopefully, that will also lead me to be a bette
Nov 12, 2011 Ruth rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Geeks, feminists, fans of women, fans of superheroes, pop culture whores
Recommended to Ruth by: The author, whom I heard speak at GeekGirlCon 2011
This book is a survey and review of the female super-hero's development throughout pop culture (mainly TV, movies and comics), thought the 20th and 21st Century. It does a good just discussing a lot of the problematic aspects of a lot of female heroic characters (or lack there-of). It highlights characters, works and authors that to particularly good jobs at creating heroic women, and gives you a long list of potential new media to consume. Really enjoyable, sheds some interesting light on ...more
Jul 14, 2010 Candace rated it really liked it
Stuller traces the appearance of superwomen in the modern mythologies of popular media (TV, film, and comics), starting with Wonder Woman's 1941 debut. Not just a trip down memory lane, Ink-Stained Amazons critiques as well as cataloging, telling a story of the ebb flow of feminist ideals in popular culture, suggesting (not always explicitly) an overarching understanding of the role of myth in self-making and the formation of ideals, and calling for an evolution in our understanding and ...more
Jan 20, 2011 Shaun rated it really liked it
Stuller's book is both fascinating and insightful. This is a topic a wrestle with, myself as someone who fancies himself a writer and it gave me a lot to think about. If I had any complaints, it would be that Stuller spends a more of time with Superwomen of television and movies than she does with comics. I really would have liked her to have gone deeper into comics, where I feel a lot of less-well known characters could have gotten the nod so often denied them.
Trish Heinrich
Oct 22, 2011 Trish Heinrich rated it really liked it
Awesome!!!! Only disappointment so far is that they don't mention Erin Soong from "Farscape".
Finished today & wow. Can't say enough about how inspiring it was. Her analysis was deep w/o being so heady you couldn't follow. I found myself nostalgic for some of the shows and characters she talked about, at the same time I became curious snout shows and characters i'd never before considered. this will be on my year end list of favorite books I'be read this year.
Mar 29, 2012 Beth rated it liked it
Shelves: 2012
An interesting read with some fascinating points and information. But I found the tone a bit... belligerent, I guess is the word. As if the author is daring you to disagree with her definitions of feminism. Which I did, on occasion, but that's ok too. That's how good conversations get started.
Jul 24, 2011 Kate rated it really liked it
I loved this book. It's a feminist critique of the genre of Sci Fi. While there are a few gaps (where was Hermione Granger?, for instance), it was an excellent primer to the language of superwomen. (I loved the Sarah-Jane Smith shout-out, too.)
Katherine Lavelle
Jul 20, 2016 Katherine Lavelle rated it it was amazing
If you like Buffy and other powerful women, this book is a great read. It was a great set up for me seeing Ghostbusters (2016)!
Oct 18, 2015 Casey rated it really liked it
Definitely fascinating. Women's representation in comics is a controversial affair that needs more time in the spotlight than it is currently getting.
Mommamega rated it really liked it
Jul 28, 2010
Laura Saulnier
Laura Saulnier rated it it was ok
Oct 09, 2013
Lois rated it really liked it
Nov 29, 2016
Raine Szramski
Raine Szramski rated it really liked it
Nov 22, 2012
Dark rated it it was amazing
Feb 10, 2015
Kayla rated it liked it
Sep 05, 2011
Catherine rated it it was amazing
Dec 14, 2014
Alissa rated it really liked it
Oct 20, 2012
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