Topic: Feminism in YA
In my opinion, I think YA has taken stride and embraced feminism (not to the extent that it could but it's reaching there). We've lived in a society where heroes have taken the lead (and still kinda do when it comes to DC/Marvel) but in YA a lot of great heroines have emerged.
But first let's talk about what feminism really means:
- the doctrine advocating social, political, and all other rights of women equal to those of men.
To me it means that women AND men should be able to feel/do whatever they want to do without it being labeled as insults or as "girly" or "masculine". We've primarily associated feminism with women rights because, let's be honest, women have only recently been able to vote and have options they can choose from and we don't even have equal wages yet. This society is messed up. At the same time I do think that boys/men shouldn't be ridiculed simply because they felt emotional (God forbid they cry a little) or care about their appearance. I don't but there are a lot of guys who really really care about what they look and how others view them. Yet still, that's more commonly associated with women in the way that shopping and makeup and other sort of things are "for women". No one should be judged for liking books, video games, makeup, or cars. If they like it, SO BE IT!
And this has totally digresses from what I really wanted to discuss. I LOVE that there are so many books with heroines who are awesome and could totally rule the world if they wanted to. It's great that some books and authors emphasize women independence and self discovery. It's in this golden age of YA that this has become a most prominent feature. Girls are looked at as equals (whether with powers or not) and for the youth it definitely ensures what they're capable of. Most of the female characters within YA novels show women as strong, capable people who don't follow the social norms given to them because of their gender.
And then there's the romance aspect of these stories. I've heard stuff here and there about people disliking romance in stories because it disrupts this female independence or just makes the girl look weak. Like what are you talking about? Girls and guys in general like being in relationships. As long as they don't get too dependent on each other and still have their own lives, it's all good. Just because a girl wants to be in a relationship doesn't mean she doesn't want to be seen as an equal/partner. And just because a girl is in a relationship does not (necessarily) mean she loses her independence or who she really is. (In some books it even enhances those things)