This essay considers the powerful social impact of a seemingly innocuous 1960s mainstream Argentine cartoon strip called Mafalda. Focusing on its main protagonist, a little girl from an average Buenos Aires middle-class family, the essay outlines the significant counterhegemonic gender discourses disseminated by the popular strip, reflecting on how it captured the imagination of female fans. The analysis shows how an apparently inoffensive popular culture icon, which came to life and thrived during one of the least democratic and most repressive periods of Argentine history, managed to publicize ideas considered subversive by those in power. Ultimately, the essay questions to-date unchallenged scholarly interpretations that fail to properly consider the reception of popular-culture icons like Mafalda and presume masculinist ideologies to have been all powerful, and near inescapable, in the Argentina of the period.


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pp. 41-56
Launched on MUSE
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