In 2016 Wonder Woman served, briefly, as an honorary UN ambassador. Her appointment was met with protest and a petition that argued, among other complaints, that Wonder Woman's sexualized appearance made her unsuitable as a representative of the UN. This paper seeks to argue the contrary. It charts the use of the character as a political figure, both on and off the page, noting that her role as UN ambassador has significant historical precedent. While recognizing the often problematic representation of women in many iterations of the superhero genre, this paper also seeks to understand complaints over Wonder Woman's mode of dress in the context of arguments that have historically been used to bar women's entry into politics.
Wonder Woman for President
Philip Smith obtained his PhD from Loughborough University. He is coeditor of Firefly Revisited (Rowman and Littlefield, 2015) and the author of Reading Art Spiegelman (Routledge, 2015). He is currently editing three books—Gender and the Superhero Narrative (University Press of Mississippi, forthcoming 2018), The Novels of Elie Wiesel (SUNY Press, forthcoming 2019), and Drawing the Past: Comics and the Historical Imagination (University Press of Mississippi, expected 2021)—and is a coauthor of Printing Terror: 1950s and 1970s Horror Comics (Manchester University Press, expected 2020). He is an assistant professor of English at the University of the Bahamas, where he teaches children's literature, popular fiction, and film.
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Philip Smith; Wonder Woman for President. Feminist Media Histories 1 July 2018; 4 (3): 227–243. doi: https://doi.org/10.1525/fmh.2018.4.3.227
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