Celebrating Women Series: David Berger on the Iconic Wonder Woman

Welcome to the ninth article in the “Celebrating Women” Series for Women’s History Month! It’s the first time I’ve coordinated an author guest article series to celebrate women in history or women making history! Thank you to David Berger for offering the ninth article in this series. If you’d like to continue on with the tour, which runs March 19-31, 2014, follow along each day on the main blog or head to this blog page, Women in History, which will be updated daily with the scheduled link.

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Wonder Woman–A Model of Strength and Courage for Women for 75 Years!
by author David Berger

lynda-carter-wonder-woman

Lynda Carter as Wonder Woman

With this being Women’s History Month, I’d like to focus attention on one woman whose influence on women has continued consistently for 75 years—Wonder Woman! Since her first appearance in 1941, she has been the quintessential female comic book character for many reasons, and her effect on others has lasted through multiple incarnations and eras.

Whether she was a World War II heroine or a 1970s feminist or a 21st century badass warrior, Princess Diana of Paradise Island has always resonated with readers, and with women, she has held particular sway, indirectly or directly. She even figured on Ms. magazine’s premiere issue in July 1972 with the caption “Wonder Woman for President.”

To have made such a presence in the non-comic book world (appearing on a mainstream magazine cover) certainly shows how this fictional character has influenced the public consciousness.

From my experience reading comics as well as knowing many women who read them as well, I have noticed how they have embraced the varying aspects of this comic book character (created by a man, William Moulton Marston, by the way). Of all the qualities this character has, the most relevant has been her strength, and not just physical strength either.

Many of my female friends see Wonder Woman as extremely relevant to them, especially when it comes to holding their own in a “Man’s World,” so to speak. Some occasionally wear a WW icon or slogan on their clothing while others do the ever-popular “bullets-and-bracelets” pose (voicing “ka-ching ka-ching” to simulate bullets bouncing off bracelets) when asked how they handle the daily issues that come their way. And what woman wouldn’t want a Lasso of Truth to use with her children or even her significant other? I’ve actually heard women comment to me how handy that tool would be in finding the underlying cause of issues.

WWMsMag

The idea that women can stand toe to toe with their XY-chromosomal counterparts has been a cultural issue for centuries, but nowadays, with women’s issues being in the news as much as they have, I have seen more and more women taking a stand in politics and women’s issues, namely reproductive rights, pay equity, healthcare costs, to name a few. Anyone who knows who Wonder Woman is would certainly agree that she would most assuredly stand with her sisters in the outside world to ensure they received equality. When women assert themselves, many times they receive the moniker of “Amazon” simply because they’re showing their strength.

Popular culture has shown that the enduring qualities of the Amazing Amazon have left an indelible imprint on both men and women, through art, television, inspiring shows like the Bionic Woman, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Xena: Warrior Princess, etc., (and most people still associate actress Lynda Carter with Wonder Woman, having seen the image of that iconic costume somewhere), literature and comics, cosmetics (the MAC Wonder Woman collection, for one), clothing (comic-inspired attire as well as the Diane von Furstenberg collection inspired by the comic character), and music (the television show theme is still recognizable today).

WW1

Wonder Woman has “encourage[d] women to stand up for themselves, to learn to fight, and be strong, so they don’t have to be scared, or depend on men” according to her creator, William Moulton Marston. According to Phillip Charles Crawford in his article, “The Legacy of Wonder Woman” in the School Library Journal, “The best Wonder Woman stories inspire us to imagine a more egalitarian world and encourage us to become agents of social change. They have the power to inspire girls (and boys) to become heroes in their own lives.”

And, they do indeed inspire. This woman who espouses compassion, wisdom, love, and peace has endured since 1941, and she will always be relevant as a standard for women (and men).

David Berger, Biography~

DBFeb2014 copyAn English teacher for over 20 years, David Berger has also published two novels in his mythic fantasy series, Task Force: Gaea, and is working on his third.
A comic book aficionado and sushi lover, he currently lives in Land O’ Lakes, FL with his partner Gavi and their two cats.
Find out more on David and his books at:

TASK FORCE: GAEA—FINDING BALANCE~Synopsis

During the age of Olympos, when a vengeful goddess shatters the Sacred Scales, both immortals and humans alike suffer. Apollo becomes a victim of Zeus’ wrath, and his existential journey takes him to many places and times. The Fates direct his course, and he must make difficult, yet vital, choices.

TFGCoverwSwordMillennia pass, and Dan, Aleta, Brandon, and Sarah—four reluctant modern-day heroes gifted by the gods—bound by prophecy, have to choose whether or not to save their world when it could mean they never existed. They must battle against forces from the Underworld and repair the Sacred Scales. With the equilibrium between Order and Chaos unhinged, these four must ally themselves with the United Nations to protect an endangered world, becoming the only group who can fight against metaphysical threats to the Earth, forging Task Force: Gaea.

Can mortals succeed where gods cannot go?

TASK FORCE: GAEA—MEMORY’S CURSE, Synopsis~

For Aegis, Zodiak, Aether, and Talon, operatives in the United Nations Task Force: Gaea, life should have returned to normal after they restored the cosmic balance, but because of the intervention of the Fates, they would never remember what life was like before. With the true history unfolding, paranoia dominates and tight-fisted governments mandate control through a pervasive military presence, DNA scans, and surveillance cameras.

MCCover_doneA new mission arises for Task Force: Gaea when an ancient cloudlike evil referred to in prophecy only as The Nebulous One emerges from Tartaros, with the intention of devouring the Olympeian gods. But, before she can find them, all of the gods but Apollo have disappeared. Leaving chaos and human corpses in her wake, she oozes her way across the globe to satisfy her hunger. Apollo will not face this threat alone, and it then becomes a race: will he and Task Force: Gaea find and vanquish this primordial goddess without falling prey to her power before she finds the gods?

Aegis and his teammates have to battle personal demons in the form of potent memories that could jeopardize their mission’s success and could mean the end of their team. Starting in antiquity and moving to the modern day, this epic battle between good and evil leaves both immortal and mortal alike wondering whether memory can be a blessing… or a curse.

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