OT feminisms

Sally Odgers sodgers at tassie.net.au
Thu Mar 11 20:22:40 EST 2004

----- > Now, I might give you the homosexual bit, but why would you say DWJ
is not
> a feminist? She writes fiction which has strong female characters,

She also writes female villains... both strong and Ivy/clinging types. I've
never read DWJ as a feminist writer. I think she does human characters,
without let or hindrance. Apart from parents, which she does treat
lopsidedly, she's pretty non-partisan in her characterisation. I've always
had a problem with writers who lean too hard one way or the other...

As an example, I've read books where Christians are the only "good"
characters and equally, I've read books where as soon as a Christian appears
you know s/he will be "bad". It doesn't come down to stereotyping, as such,
but to the writer's habit of mind... and it's manipulative, and I don't like
it. Even given DWJ's habit of mind about parents (and parent figures), she
does allow some of them to be "good". The Sykes parents, Polly's granny,
Mig's mum, Sempitern Walker etc all have weaknesses, but they're all
positive/good. Mrs Walker is one of the most transparently "good" ones.


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