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I'm No Princess

Super Hero Girls Together

Lucy I. Baker

Abstract

DC Super Hero Girls (DCSHG) is a trans-media franchise that includes not just screen media texts but a wide array of themed merchandise aimed at a multi-generational market. I argue here that key components of the franchise present a queered version of girlhood that critiques femininity as a gender role while presenting femaleness as encompassing a variety of signifiers, acts, and presentations that can be read as queer (particularly by the so-called big girls in the audience). This is evident in the representation of queer relationships that exist in the sexualized zone of the canonical material, allowing the DCSHG characters to inhabit a liminal proto-queer space between homosocial/gender non-conforming and lesbian that is considered more appropriate for young girls. I examine the way in which the DC Super Hero Girls franchise rejects and reforms familiar elements of comics, super heroism, and princess culture to create that space for girls.

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Lucy Baker, Paola Castañeda, Matthew Dalstrom, Ankur Datta, Tanja Joelsson, Mario Jordi-Sánchez, Jennifer Lynn Kelly, and Dhan Zunino Singh

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Lesley Murray and Susana Cortés-Morales, Children's Mobilities: Interdependent, Imagined, Relational (London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2019), 307 pp., 10 illus., $89.99

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John Krige, ed., How Knowledge Moves: Writing the Transnational History of Science and Technology (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 2019), 408 pp., 11 illus., $40