Women and Other Monsters: Building a New Mythology

This fresh cultural analysis of female monsters from Greek mythology is an invitation for all women to reclaim these stories as inspiration for a wilder, more "monstrous" version of feminism.

The folklore that has shaped our dominant culture teems with terrifying female creatures. In our language and in our stories (many of which have been written by men), we underline the idea that women who step out of bounds - who are angry or greedy or ambitious, who are overtly sexual or not sexy enough - aren't just outside the norm, but unnatural. Monstrous. But what if the traits that we've learnt make us 'dangerous and undesirable' are actually our greatest strengths?

Through fresh analysis of 11 female monsters, including Medusa, the Harpies, the Furies, and the Sphinx, Jess Zimmerman takes us on an illuminating feminist journey through mythology. She guides women (and others) to reexamine their relationships with traits like hunger, anger, ugliness, and ambition, teaching readers to embrace a new image of the female hero: one that looks a lot like a monster, with the agency and power to match. Monsters get to do what other female characters - damsels, love interests, and even most heroines - do not. Monsters get to be complete, unrestrained, and larger than life. Today, women are increasingly aware of the ways rules and socially constructed expectations have diminished us. After seeing where compliance gets us - harassed, shut out, and ruled by predators - women have never been more ready to become repellent, fearsome, and ravenous.

Paperback, 224 pages.
Measures 15.2 x 1.5 x 22.9 cm.


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