Home and Hell

Representations of Female Masculinity in Action-Driven Science Fiction Literature

  • Anna Bark Persson
Keywords: female masculinity, science fiction, action heroes, queer reading, genre literature


The aim of this article is to examine the representation of female masculinity in genre literature. Reading female masculinity as queer embodiment, I put two science fictional texts driven by a typical action narrative in dialogue with earlier research on representations of female masculinity in literature and popular culture to demonstrate the importance of bringing the genre of the text into the analysis when examining female masculinity. In the article, I use the connection between female masculinity and tragedy as my starting point to exemplify how the genre of a text shapes the depiction and reading of female masculinity. In the action-driven science fiction texts I study, this link is very much present, but tragedy is given another role to play. Instead of being an element in the constitution of gender non-conforming as an unlivable experience, the representation of these masculine female heroes as oriented away from heteronormative constructions of a good life (Ahmed 2006) makes possible the depiction of these women as masculine, as well as the glorification of their gender non-conformity within the framework of the action-based SF narrative.


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How to Cite
Bark Persson, A. (2020). Home and Hell: Representations of Female Masculinity in Action-Driven Science Fiction Literature. Lambda Nordica, 25(2), 68-90. https://doi.org/10.34041/ln.v25.675