Trina Robbins Introduction - Essay

Introduction

Trina Robbins 1938–

American cartoonist and editor.

Robbins's cartoon stories express her positive feelings about the feminist movement. When she has used her work to vent her anger at a male-dominated society, her cartoons have been somewhat violent.

For years Robbins was a creator of strictly underground comics (those that, in her words, cannot get published anywhere else). Robbins's strips are finally appearing in such magazines as Playboy, National Lampoon, and High Times. Her cartoons are now being recognized by many critics as valid statements about today's culture. Robbins believes her work has suffered from the negative reputation of underground comics for violence, sexism, and sexual explicitness. She feels her work is just the opposite: her violence is clean and usually in the form of self-defense, her heroines are beautiful because beauty appeals to her artist's eye, and sex, as she depicts it, is loving and natural.

Some critics feel her cartoons display a negative attitude toward men, but Robbins charges these critics with reading too much into the actions depicted. She asserts that the sense of her work is exactly what she writes and draws, without all of the connotations present in so many underground publications. Robbins once said that she wanted to draw pictures that tell stories, and she has attempted through her comics to tell the story of woman's freedom from male oppression.