Lois Lane: In Step with Second-wave Feminism


  • Joshua Roeder Wichita State University


Lois Lane, Second-wave feminism, Wonder Woman, women's liberation, DC Comics


Lois Lane has been described as “impetuous, reckless, irrepressible, impulsive and unpredictable.” She is “too common.” She is “a combination saint, sinner, imp, imbecile, smartypants, snob, Samaritan.” She is “snoopy, inquisitive, curious, a pest, and can’t keep a secret.” Lane has also been described as “being attractive, ingenious, a star reporter, loyal to SUPERMAN and a terrific booster of worthy charities.” At first glance, the main characteristic of Lane is her enigmatic qualities. However, taking a step back from the character reveals that the framework of omen's history in which Lane was originally put into had begun to change.1 Creators of the character, Joe Siegel and Joe Shuster, had Lane appearing “as a fixture in Superman’s life from 1938 on, even before Lex Luthor and Supergirl, she challenged, undermined, superseded, and sometimes, if necessary and convenient, aligned herself with the roles women were assigned in society.”2 Since her inception, Lois Lane has had to navigate her way through multiple feminist waves, ideologies, and the perpetual reincarnation by various artists.3 This is because characters like these are outlets for artists and writers to express their individual perspectives on life. In the case of Lane, she is an expression for what her creators thought a woman like her should be. This expression becomes sensational when the character takes the lead in her own comic book, Superman’s Girl Friend, Lois Lane.