Female Characters: Why all the fuss?

Now, don’t get uppity, I am not in any way suggesting that female characters should be ignored, omitted or stereotyped but by the same token, why should a character’s gender influence their treatment at all?

All too often I read articles about the lack of ‘strong female characters’ or see film reviews with a token, leather clad chick wielding only her gun and her sex appeal. Why is it that female characters must be so one dimensional, so restricted by the categories in which they are placed that they become cardboard copies of reality. Why the focus on ‘strong female characters’ at all? Why not just strong human characters? It seems odd to me that there should be any discussion on the matter at all.

To me, a strong female character isn’t always physically so. In one of my works I have a character who is a young woman. She never fights, in fact she refuses to pick up a sword even when under threat, she is polite and patient and softly spoken and she quietly goes about making sure everyone is cared for, even when she is treated like rubbish. In my opinion, that shows a strength greater than any one-sided vengeance seeking ‘super-woman’ can.

Also, check out this article which goes into more depth and sounds a lot more logical than this one. 😀

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5 thoughts on “Female Characters: Why all the fuss?

  1. Emily Witt says:

    I definitely agree! I really like this article on overthinkingit.com. It points out that a lot of writers seem to think strong female characters means writing “strong female (characters)” rather than “strong characters (female)”.

  2. Kate is says:

    Yes, strong human characters. I have never thought about the separation between the male and female character but it definitely is there for some.

  3. Emmy says:

    I read the article previously and it led me to thinking about my own female characters. No, they are not those kick-ass chicks, but neither do they shine as the women I really want them to be. I’d like to think that repeated reminders of this will eventually produce the heroin women can be truly proud off. Thanks for that reminder 🙂

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