xxii Introduction middle school students focused on gender stereotypes have found them to be effective at increasing their understanding (Puchner, Markowitz, &Hedley, 2015). Emphasizing popular culture that offers a feminist view can also help challenge gender stereotypes. Many applauded Disney’s Frozen, released in 2013, for telling the story of two strong and powerful princesses from their own point of view and not in relation to men. Unlike typical Disney stories, the “act of true love” that saves Anna’s life is not one by a man but the love of her sister (Trier-Bieniek, 2015). Other recommended popular films that are considered feminist include All About Eve (1950), Alien (1979), 9 to 5 (1980), The Color Purple (1985), Desper- ately Seeking Susan (1985), Thelma &Louise (1991), A League of Their Own (1992), The Piano (1993), The Joy Luck Club (1993), Little Women (1994), Clueless (1995), The First Wives Club (1996), Erin Brockovich (2000), Whale Rider (2002), Iron Jawed Angels (2004), Frida (2002, Wendy and Lucy (2008), Wild (2014), The Babadook (2014), Mad Max: Fury Road (2015), The Diary of a Teenage Girl (2015), Girlhood (2014, Hidden Figures (2016), The Witch (2015, Disney’s Moana (2016), and Wonder Woman (2017) (Janes, 2022). Certainly, there are many more, but as this list makes clear, films that can expand feminist views can be found in all genres. Similarly, there are many TV shows that feature strong and capable females and that decidedly pass the Bechdel Test. The popular Doctor Who was rebooted in 2018 to feature a female, Jodie Whittaker, in the title role, the first female in that role since the show began. Killing Eve is a tremendously popular show starring Sandra Oh. The spy drama gives the female characters all the wittiest lines, unlike typical shows in that genre. GLOW is about a group of female wrestlers in the 1980s who offer support for one another and who are diverse and empowered. My Brilliant Friend, set in 20th-century working-class Italy, focuses on female friend- ship and oppression. The Handmaid’s Tale is the series adaptation of Margaret Atwood’s book. It showcases a dystopian, misogynistic society. Tales of the City is a reboot of a 1993 series focusing on an LGBTQ community in San Francisco. Big Little Lies follows several women in a suburban community, including one who is the victim of domestic violence. Claws involves five manicurists in Florida who accidentally get involved in organized crime. Pose is set in 1980s New York City and addresses transphobia and the AIDS crisis. Jessica Jones is about the title character, who is a superhero that has opened her own detective agency. Years and Years stars Emma Thompson as a female president who, like President Donald Trump, is also an entrepreneur and avid user of the news cycle for political advan- tage (Watanabe, 2019). Common Sense Media has a listing of TV shows for young people who defy gender stereotypes. It is separated for children ages 2–4, 5–7, 8–9, tween (10–12), and teenagers (13 and older). It also lists recommended films, books, games, apps, and music (Common Sense Media, n.d.). Showcasing artists and actors who speak out about gender equality can also help create change. Many applauded Beyoncé for standing in front of a huge sign reading “feminist” at the 2014 MTV Music Awards, noting “in an image-driven culture where the five second sound bite rules and meme’s are more popular than books, the image of Beyoncé declaring her feminism to the world just felt
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