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The Woman Fantastic in Contemporary American Media Culture$
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Elyce Rae Helford, Shiloh Carroll, Sarah Gray, and Michael R. II Howard

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781496808714

Published to University Press of Mississippi: September 2018

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781496808714.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM Mississippi SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.mississippi.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University Press of Mississippi, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MSSO for personal use.date: 28 September 2021

From SuperOther to SuperMother: The Journey toward Liberty

From SuperOther to SuperMother: The Journey toward Liberty

(p.101) From SuperOther to SuperMother: The Journey toward Liberty
The Woman Fantastic in Contemporary American Media Culture

Nicola Mann

University Press of Mississippi

In “From SuperOther to SuperMother: The Journey toward Liberty,” Nicola Mann studies the character Martha Washington from Frank Miller and Dave Gibbons’ limited series comic Give Me Liberty (1990). A single mother from Chicago’s Cabrini-Green public housing project here rises to the status of lauded war hero. As an African-American woman, argues Mann, Washington not only re-scripts the familiar trope of the white male superhero, but also offers an alternate vision of the children of urban single mothers. Her success story speaks to contemporary real-world political claims-to-agency for young black women. In particular, the chapter explores the formal voyeurism implicit in Give Me Liberty’s panel sequences. Through the “gutter”—the blank white space between comic book panels—the reader becomes a silent accomplice in deciphering and linking the singular moments described in the panels into a series of topological connections, and, eventually, a continuous unified whole.

Keywords:   Give Me Liberty, Martha Washington, Black single mothers, Comics, Race

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