Strong Female Characters in Fantasy Literature

All the post-modern literary gems have one thing in common; strong female characters. However, in this blog we are focusing solely on the powerful women present in fantasy literature. From Beatrice Prior to Katniss Everdeen, fantasy literature has all one could ever ask for. Today we at Daastan we will give you a tour of the best that fantasy literature has to offer.

Jude Duarte – The Cruel Prince

When we think of strong female characters, Jude Duarte – High Queen of faerie takes the cake. Having lived her entire life as an outsider, a human in a land of fae, Jude knows what it is like to live in fright. After spending all her life hiding and trying to fit in, Jude decides that she will no longer be an object of entertainment to the folk of faerie. Her journey from a mere inconvenience in the land of magic to being their Queen, is captured perfectly by Holly Black. Holly shows that Jude fights with admirable strength no matter what troubles the fae throw her way. 

Female Characters

“I stand in front of my window and imagine myself a fearless knight, imagine myself a witch who hid her heart in her finger and then chopped her finger off.”

Zafirah Bint Iskander – We hunt the flame

Being a fine mix of wit, power, bravery and strength, Zafira Bint Iskander makes her way into this list with ease. In the snow covered land of Demenhur, Zafira lives her life as a huntress. She hunts in the dark lands of Arz to provide food for her people. The story is set in a time where the society looked down upon women in almost every regard, yet Zafirah shattered all the expectations of fixed gender roles. Not only is she sharp minded but she knows her way around a bow and arrow. Moreover, to save her people, Zafirah sets on the perilous journey which even the most skilled of warriors feared. 

Female Characters

“You will always find your way, Zafira bint Iskandar.”

Shahrzad Al Khayzuran – The wrath and the dawn

Sixteen year old Shahrzaad sets out seek revenge when her bestfriend Shiva is murdered by the Boy-King of Khorasan, Khalid. Knowing fully well the consequences of her plan, Shahrzaad still remains determined to avenge Shiva. However, the real strength is displayed by Shahrzaad when she finds out that Khalid is innocent. Upon this discovery, Shahrzaad lets go of her hatred instead of being blinded by the fire of revenge. Shahrzaad’s character is someone who knows when to fight and when not to. In addition, Shahrzaad shows how one can be completely and madly in love with another person and still not lose their individuality.

Female Characters

“She was a dangerous, dangerous girl. A plague. A Mountain of Adamant who tore the iron from ships, sinking them to their watery graves without a second thought. With a mere smile and a wrinkle of her nose.”

Inej Ghafa – Six of Crows

Last but not the least on our list of iconic female protagonists is Inej Ghafa. Inej is a woman of colour, far from home trying to survive in the streets of Ketterdam that bares their teeth to the weak like a monster. In her brief years in Ketterdam, she has been a sex slave and a crow to Kaz’s heist plans in order to survive. Inej’s story is of resilience and faith. Despite the hardships, Inej tells the readers how your conscience and pure heart is a measure of your character and not what people think about you. Apart from that, she is a person who has the courage to reach out for love. In the book, Inej expresses her feelings towards Kaz along the following lines.

Inej Ghafa
Inej Ghafa from Six of Crows

“I’ll have you without armour Kaz Brekker or I won’t have you at all”. 

After getting to know such strong female characters in fantasy literature we agree with Beyonce when she says,

Who runs the world?

We hope you enjoyed this rundown of powerful and diverse portrayal of women in literature. For more literary goodness , stay tuned!

Noor Hashmi
Noor Hashmi is a student of literature at Numl University. She is an aspiring poetess. She runs a blog by the name of “Diaries of Huda” sharing her journey through poetry. In her free time, she loves to paint and bake.

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