“We Have Always Fought”
Half the world is full of women, but it’s rare to hear a narrative that doesn’t speak of women as the people who have things done to them instead of the people who do things. More often, women are talked about as a man’s daughter. A man’s wife.
The above quote is from Kameron Hurley’s May 2013 essay entitled “‘We Have Always Fought’: Challenging the ‘Women, Cattle and Slaves’ Narrative” that won the Hugo Award for Best Related Work in 2014. (Link below.)
In this essay, Hurley talks about how women and their stories are systematically erased from the dominant narrative, given our society that is defined by patriarchal ideologies. As a result of this, as language affects how we see things, the predominant way of thinking has it that we don’t see women at all, in all their personhood. As above, what happens is that we see women always just in relation to men; we think of them as how they are falsely presented to be by the hegemony.
Later on in the work, Hurley goes on to say that in order for this to change, we have to start recognizing that this is a problem. We need to start acknowledging that women “have always fought,” because contrary to what we may have been taught to believe “…if you think there’s a thing – anything – women didn’t do in the past, you’re wrong.”
We chose, then, to call our project “We Have Always Fought,” because we believe that Kameron Hurley’s essay shows exactly why it is important that such characters as Warrior Women are included in narratives. If done well, Warrior Women deconstruct the image of what women are supposed to be. We believe that this is a step towards recognizing that women are complex beings, capable of so much more than it is believed by many.
Kameron Hurley’s essay “‘We Have Always Fought’: Challenging the ‘Women, Cattle and Slaves’ Narrative” on A Dribble of Ink