On the surface, "Mulan" appears to adhere perfectly to the badass paradigm: a woman becomes a “strong” lead by virtue of her physical competency. However, closer examination of the film reveals that the story emphasizes strength in femininity and ingenuity, not physical power. Primary male characters also adopt feminine traits in order to defeat the the film’s villains. Mulan therefore becomes the consummate strong female character not (only) because she is literally strong, but because she demonstrates agency in every phase of the narrative. Her mode of success transcends gender, a theme so powerful it affects her peers and causes them to break out of their own gender norms.
“I am looking forward to steering the women’s, gender, and sexuality studies department, which is devoted to modeling inclusivity and excellence, as well as linking the learning of knowledge with creating visions for social justice. WGSS has one of the most diverse faculty at the University at Albany and regularly teaches classes filled with students across differences based on gender, race, nationality, ability, and sexuality. We place students at the center of learning and present the most cutting-edge research that integrates intersectionality, transnationality, and social engagement. We are committed to leading our university community on these issues.”
Video: “What is Intersectionality?”