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The illustrated notes here cover chapter 4 of Roger Sabin's 'Comics, Comix and Graphic Novels: A History of Comic Art'. Chapter 4 covers the history of comics for girls and young women. There have been female characters appearing in comics since, what Sabin considers is the very first comic; Ally Sloper. But the women are not the focus of these comics. There were female characters in The Beano and Dandy, but they are not the most prominent characters in the comic. But DC Thomson did produce comics just for young girls, like the Bunty.
Most of the comics for girls were not commercial successes. So much so that all the ones mentioned here have been discontinued. It would seem reasonable to assume this was largely because the comics were largely written by men and reviewed by men and published by men and therefore girls had problems identifying with the characters. I feel like there is something wonderful that could have been achieved if only there had been more women involved in the production of these comics. These comics might then have been a challenge for the fashion conscious magazines that dominated the market and still continue to. These comics might have been inspiring girls to be creative and smart and funny rather than feeding them celebrity and advertisements largely designed to make them feel inadequate. Maybe it is not too late or maybe, and it is sad to admit, young girls really do want fashion magazines more than anything else.
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