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Woman with Wanderlust is a travel blog made to break down the stereotypes of female travelers as they are portrayed in mass media. The idea came to me when I was preparing to study abroad in Morocco and every person I talked to felt the need to remind me how dangerous the world was for a woman on her own. There were many references to the popular movie ‘Taken’ starring Liam Neeson. When I decided I wanted to continue the blog on my backpacking trip through Europe, once again ‘Taken’ was referenced but people also insisted I was going to fall in love with an Italian man and never come home. It felt, to me, that the world saw the female traveler as naive and weak or in need of a man in her life. In contrast men are often encouraged to take years off to travel, to seek adventure or find themselves.
I decided I could use my education from the Cronkite School in writing, photography and social media to produce a resource for women looking to travel abroad. I could tell stories of my personal experiences that could both inspire and prove that a solo trip can be done. I also wanted to touch on topics that are not generally covered by popular travel blogs since they are specific to women. Topics like how to dress, making sure you travel during the day if you’re traveling alone and finding birth control or feminine hygiene products when you are traveling.
I funded the trip myself and currently the blog is designed, written and photographed entirely by me. Moving forward I would like to feature other women on my blog, especially those who have made travel a priority or a career. I plan on continuing to build the blog, hopefully gaining sponsors and becoming a more well known resources, and helping change the landscape of travel and travel blogging to become more female friendly.
For the sake of this thesis, two scholarly collections edited by Dr. Robin S. Rosenberg – Our Superheroes, Ourselves (2013) and The Psychology of Superheroes: An Unauthorized Exploration (2008) – were reviewed. From these two collections and the multitude of psychological theories they cite, those most relevant to adolescent character development are considered. Three broad theories are examined first: positive psychology, equity theory, and attachment style. Then, six additional specific theories that define temperament (behavioral activation system and behavioral inhibition system), personality theory, duel identity, media identification, parasocial interaction, and comparison theory are reviewed. After reviewing each theory, Heroes in Crisis (2019) , a recent bestselling DC offering that addresses superhero trauma, is analyzed through the lens of these psychological theories in order to provide insight into the psychology or both superheroes and their adolescent fans.