Thursday, July 9, 2009

Trying to be Wonder Woman

Illustration by Katie Cook.

Whenever I'm looking around for Wonder Woman stuff on the Internet, about two thirds of it is actually about the comic book character. The other third is women who use Wonder Woman as a term for women who "have it all" and "make it work." They're trying to balance the career, the kids; all that jazz.

I might get myself into trouble here and I certainly welcome feedback on what I'm about to say, but I think it's sad for a couple of different reasons that Wonder Woman is used that way. First, I think it's sad that career women with families (there's probably a better term, but hopefully you know what I mean) feel like they're the ones who have to make it work. Isn't it horribly outdated to think that only the wife has to balance her career goals with children? Where are the husbands while their wives are comparing themselves to a superheroic ideal?

Secondly, it's sad because Wonder Woman isn't a career woman with a family. She not only doesn't have kids; she's not even in a serious relationship where she has to balance someone else's needs with her own. She's a beautiful role model for women who need to have more confidence in themselves, but she's got it frickin' easy when it comes to "having it all."

Having said all that, Susanne Middelberg has a great photography gallery that includes photos of models dressed as Wonder Woman and the Flash trying to live everyday lives. I like it because it includes Dads, who ought to be just as harried and frantic as their wives.

It's all very tasteful and artistic, but I still feel like I should mention that there are naked people in the link.


  1. You want to find "horribly outdated" you should look at the divorce/family court system. It is an insult to women as it assumes they are incapable of functioning without a man's intervention and it's an insult to men as it assumes they have little relevance in the parental role beyond financial.

  2. I have some male friends who've had to go through that, so I know exactly what you mean. You're so right.

  3. That photo gallery is amazing! Thansk for the link.