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Our Blessed Rebel Queen

Essays on Carrie Fisher and Princess Leia

edited by Linda Mizejewski and Tanya D. Zuk

Award Winner

Performance Studies, Popular Culture, Gender, Media Studies

Published: October 2021
ISBN: 9780814346860
Pages: 120 Size: 6 x 9
Illustrations: 28 full-color illus.
Published: October 2021
ISBN: 9780814346853
Pages: 120 Size: 6 x 9
Illustrations: 28 full-color illus.
Published: October 2021
ISBN: 9780814346877
Pages: 120 Size: EPUB
Illustrations: 28 full-color illus.

Our Blessed Rebel Queen: Essays on Carrie Fisher and Princess Leia is the first full-length exploration of Carrie Fisher's career as actress, writer, and advocate. Fisher's entangled relationship with the iconic Princess Leia is a focal point of this volume. Editors Linda Mizejewski and Tanya D. Zuk have assembled a collection that engages with the multiple interfaces between Fisher's most famous character and her other life-giving work.

The contributors offer insights into Fisher as science-fiction idol, author, feminist inspiration, and Lucasfilm commodity. Jennifer M. Fogel examines the thorny "ownership" of Fisher's image as a conflation of fan nostalgia, merchandise commodity, and eventually, feminist icon. Philipp Dominik Keidl looks at how Carrie Fisher and her iconic character are positioned within the male-centric history of Star Wars. Andrew Kemp-Wilcox researches the 2016 controversy over a virtual Princess Leia that emerged after Carrie Fisher's death. Tanya D. Zuk investigates the use of Princess Leia and Carrie images during the Women's March as memetic reconfigurations of historical propaganda to leverage political and fannish ideological positions. Linda Mizejewski explores Carrie Fisher's autobiographical writing, while Ken Feil takes a look at Fisher's playful blurring of truth and fiction in her screenplays. Kristen Anderson Wagner identifies Fisher's use of humor and anger to challenge public expectations for older actresses. Cynthia Hoffner and Sejung Park highlight Fisher's mental health advocacy, and Slade Kinnecott personalizes how Fisher's candidness and guidance about mental health were especially cherished by those who lacked a support system in their own lives.

Our Blessed Rebel Queen is distinct in its interdisciplinary approach, drawing from a variety of methodologies and theoretical frameworks. Longtime fans of Carrie Fisher and her body of work will welcome this smart and thoughtful tribute to a multimedia legend.

Linda Mizejewski is an Arts and Sciences Distinguished Professor of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at The Ohio State University. Her books include Pretty/ Funny: Women’s Comedy and Body Politics and Hysterical!: Women in American Comedy, coedited with Victoria Sturtevant.Tanya D. Zuk is a lecturer at Georgia State University in moving image studies. Her research focuses on canonical collaborative authorship in alternative queer media.

Contributors Include:
Ken Feil, Jennifer M. Fogel, Cynthia A. Hoffner, Maghan Molloy Jackson, Philipp Dominik Keidl, Andrew Kemp-Wilcox, Slade Kinnecott, Linda Mizejewski, Sejung Park, Kristen Anderson Wagner, Tanya D. Zuk

This wonderful collection of essays explores Carrie Fisher’s celebrity not only through its complex involvement with Hollywood history, and her defining role as Leia, but through her writing, wry comedy, and mental health advocacy. Speaking to researchers, students and fans, Our Blessed Rebel Queen explores multiple features of Fisher’s stardom, conveying both Fisher’s immersion in and her forthright challenge to Hollywood and celebrity culture. The essays reflect on the ways in which Fisher’s image was circulated and commodified, and on what Fisher’s humor and care meant to her fans. Moving and thoughtful, these essays underline how Fisher’s stardom was defined by but also exceeded the role for which she was most famous.

– Yvonne Tasker, professor of media and communication, University of Leeds

This welcome anthology invites us to disentangle Carrie Fisher from Princess Leia. The essays are as insightful and witty as their subject. The volume acknowledges the personal and historical impact of Leia/Carrie while it frees the legacy of Carrie Fisher from The Force—a life lived in celebrity, she was an activist, advocate, and feminist herstorian.

– Mary Beth Haralovich, professor emerita, The University of Arizona

Our Blessed Rebel Queen effectively captures both the mythic and deliciously human facets of Fisher’s star persona and comprehensively theorizes her work as a writer, activist, and actress. Bringing together generational perspectives on both Fisher and feminism and making meaningful contributions to star and celebrity studies as well as fan studies, this collection is sure to resonate with media scholars and Fisher’s fans across the galaxy. Mizejewski and Zuk have done our Princess proud.

– Suzanne Scott, author of Fake Geek Girls: Fandom, Gender, and the Convergence Culture Industry

Our Blessed Rebel Queen is a smart sociological take on Carrie Fisher and her alter ego Leia Organa; its essays examine the relationships between fans and the two women.

– Jaime Herndon, Foreword Reviews

  • 2021 Foreword INDIES Book Awards - Result: Finalist for Popular Culture Category