Friday, July 6, 2007

The Truth Behind That Golden Lasso

Peridically creators can be so odd and unusual that they eclipse even the most outrageous of creations and in the case of William Moulton Marston, who created Woman Woman, that's saying quite a lot.

From Wikipedia:
The Wonderful Elizabeth Holloway Marston

[Elizabeth] developed the character of Wonder Woman with her husband [Dr. William Moulton Marston], and served as the partial model for her. Further inspiration was found in Olive Byrne, who lived with the couple in a polyamorous relationship. William and Elizabeth had two children together, and William and Olive had two more children who were formally adopted by William and Elizabeth. After William's death, the two women continued to raise the four children and live together until Olive's death in the 1980s. Elizabeth continued to receive royalties from "Wonder Woman" after her husband's death.

Marston's Wonder Woman is often cited as an early example of bondage themes entering popular culture: physical submission appears again and again throughout Marston's comics work, with Wonder Woman and her criminal opponents frequently being tied up or otherwise restrained, and her Amazonian friends engaging in frequent wrestling and bondage play (possibly based on Marston's earlier research studies on sorority initiations). These elements were softened by later writers of the series. Though Marston had described female nature as submissive, in his other writings and interviews he referred to submission to women as a noble and potentially world-saving practice, leading ideally to the establishment of a matriarchy, and did not shy away from the sexual implications of this:

"The only hope for peace is to teach people who are full of pep and unbound force to enjoy being bound ... Only when the control of self by others is more pleasant than the unbound assertion of self in human relationships can we hope for a stable, peaceful human society. ... Giving to others, being controlled by them, submitting to other people cannot possibly be enjoyable without a strong erotic element".
About male readers, he later wrote: "Give them an alluring woman stronger than themselves to submit to, and they'll be proud to become her willing slaves!"
And for those who prefer their superheroines on the chubby side, there's BBWW, The Fat Wonder Woman Blog:

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