What Would Buffy Do? A Radical Feminist Seeks Answers from The Slayer

Presented with Brooklyn Boulders


From the moment she was called upon to become the Slayer, and thus shoulder the weight of saving the world (Again!) Buffy the Vampire Slayer wrestled with understanding not only her place in the world as a superhero, but also finding her place as young woman tasked with such a role. Should her power be rooted in something different than our traditional masculine notions of strength? Or is power simply power—void of gender and value? In this Olio, we will examine Joss Whedon’s creation, Buffy, and analyze the significance of the slayer’s struggle to fight evil while remaining “just a girl.” 


Through discussion and the viewing of a few clips, we will look critically at the show’s overarching narrative, asking ourselves: Was Buffy truly a feminist icon? If so, what kind of feminist? Radical? Liberal? Marxist? What does it mean that she alone held power that others had no access to? That she used violence to solve problems? That in the eye of the struggle, she often found herself alone, having more in common with the evil she was fighting than with the good she was trying to protect. Why, for example, was she so hot for vampires? We will discuss and debate whether, in the end, Buffy reconciled these dilemmas as she saved the world (Again!). Finally, we will ask ourselves what lessons we can learn from the slayer as we navigate modern patriarchy and capitalism.



Recommended reading from Penguin Press:

Swing Time by Zadie Smith

“Every once in a while, a novel reminds us of why we still need them." - Megan O'Grady, Vogue




Location: Brooklyn Boulders

575 Degraw St, Brooklyn, NY 11217

Brooklyn Boulders is a first of its kind rock climbing facility and dynamic creative community. They are an eclectic mix of lifestyles, born and bred from the unique and multifaceted forces of New York City. With 22,000 square feet of climbing surface managed by a dedicated and skilled route-setting staff, Brooklyn Boulders is the ideal training ground for beginners and advanced climbers, diversified with classes in yoga, acroyoga and capoeira.

Brooklyn is where it all began in 2009, when they opened their doors in the old Daily News Garage. It’s more than just a city; it’s a state of mind. It’s about the creative clash of cultures that creates a diverse community, filled with passion and drive to make things happen.


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Nov 3

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7 p.m. at Strand Bookstore

Sign Up - $20

Nov 7

*Olio Seminar* Know Your Rights? Know Your Rights!

Taught by Lawrence Cappello
7 p.m. at Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe, LLP

Sign Up - $50


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