My thoughts on Twilight . . . ages after the fact

Yeah, it's been done to death, but here I go, adding my voice to the fray . . .

Ok ok, I get it. I know why Twilight is so popular. It speaks to your gut, it confuses love and lust (as so many do) and its portrayal of first love is amazingly, viscerally accurate. It validates our basest desires. It speaks directly to the reptile brain. It's hot.

Yes, we all know that feeling - that OMG I can't live without them! mix of fear and bodily yearning. It's real. It totally happens. Twilight is steeped in it. That is not, in and of itself, a bad thing. But when we live in a world so dominated by one worldview, where love is lust and romantic love lasts forever, but real attachment never develops and women are weak and helpless and men are cold and stoic . . . then I wish that people writing for the most impressionable audiences would think a little harder about the choices they make and the characters they bring to life, the relationships they portray, and the norms they reinforce. I guess, in the end, it just makes me sad.

If, for every Bella there were an equally popular kick-ass heroine, maybe. . . but there isn't. Well, why the hell not?


  1. I completely hear you on this one, and agree with you on all counts. Yes, Twilight is there, but else is out there?

    I think you'll be happy to know that there are lots of amazing ass-kicking heroines out there in YA lit...You'll read about one of them in the E. Lockhart book, Frankie Landau Banks, and probably a few more titles this semester.

    Representation is huge in the world of YA lit, and not just when it comes to ass-kicking female characters. In fact, what surprises me every time I go to a new YA publishing presentation is the overwhelming number of books about kick-ass, thoughtful, etc female main characters versus male characters or characters of color.

    Maybe tonight we should drum up some lists of titles about this topic? It would be a great start to begin thinking about your Topical Resource List.

  2. Thanks, Jack. I'm excited to see more truly empowered female characters (ass-kicking or not) and characters of color. Bring it, YA lit!