Strong Female Characters in Literature
Updated: May 11
March is Women’s History Month, and we decided to compile a list of all the female characters in literature that have inspired us!
As we are sure you can guess, we love to read and over the years we have found countless fierce female characters to look up to. They showed us how to fight for what we believe, speak our mind, and never underestimate ourselves. We learned to love ourselves and all of the things that made us unique. Here are a few of the female characters from literature that have inspired us!
Jo March - Little Women
Jo March is a fiercely determined and extremely stubborn aspiring writer. Although she is viewed as the tough one in the family, she has a vulnerable side that makes her a relatable and inspiring character. Jo’s willingness to sacrifice her dreams of becoming a writer in order to help her family shows her selflessness and loyalty. She goes through so much and her character develops into an amazing woman that we, as readers, are all proud of.
Katniss Everdeen - The Hunger Games
Katniss is a character that everyone knows, she is brave, strong, and protective. She risks her life on multiple occasions for the people she loves and is not afraid to fight for what she believes in. When people doubted what Katniss was capable of, she proved them wrong and sparked the revolution that would change her world forever. She stepped out of her comfort zone to help her people and is one of literature's most fierce and memorable female protagonists.
Hermione Granger - Harry Potter
Hermione Granger proves to us that physical strength is not all that is required to be considered strong. She is highly intelligent, clever, and logical, and those skills come in handy multiple times throughout the Harry Potter series. Hermione is one of the most well known characters on this list, and that is because she has shown not only the wizarding world, but also the real world the importance of intelligence and knowledge. She is constantly inspiring young girls and certainly left a large impact on us as readers!
Nancy Drew - Nancy Drew
Being an detective is no easy job, especially when no one takes you seriously; however, Nancy Drew broke the stereotype and became one of literature's most recognizable sleuths. Reading these books as kids made us believe that we could do anything we put our minds to no matter what anyone tells us. Nancy Drew never backs down and always fights for what is right by finding truth. She is an amazing role model to young girls and we had to give her a spot on our list!
Anne Shirley - Anne of Green Gables
Seen as an odd, quirky, and dramatic young girl, Anne Shirley wants nothing more than to be wanted, which we are sure everyone can relate to. Anne, however, is not willing to change herself simply to make others more comfortable. She remains true to herself, even if it means possibly losing her dreams. Showing us all how important it is to just be yourself, Anne Shirley is definitely considered a strong willed character.
Lucy Pevensie - The Chronicles of Narnia
Being the youngest sibling is hard, especially when your siblings don't believe anything you tell them. When Lucy discovers a hidden world in the back of the wardrobe, her siblings are quick to dismiss her discovery as an overactive imagination, but that does not stop her from telling the truth. Lucy remains true to herself and doesn’t let the hurtful words from her siblings keep her quiet. Lucy showed us that we can't let other people keep us from believing what we know is right, her strength and determination ultimately saved Narnia and her family.
Janie Crawford - Their Eyes Were Watching God
Janie Crawford is a hopeless romantic whose every relationship has ended tragically. Every disaster she endured only made her stronger. Her independence and boldness was envied by those around her, she didn't care what people thought of her and remained true to herself. Janie experienced so much pain in her life, yet it was through that pain that she was able to grow into the beautiful, free-spirited, and resilient woman we can all aspire to be.
Jude Duarte - The Cruel Prince
As a mortal in the land of Faerie, nothing is given to Jude, she must work hard for anything she wants. She is headstrong and will do anything to get what she wants, respect. Growing up, Jude had been manipulated and taken advantage of because her mortality made her vulnerable. Jude stood up for herself and wouldn't take no for an answer. Even if the path she took was slightly unconventional, she still managed to rise above her oppressors and become one of the most powerful beings in her world.
June Iparis - Legend
June is intelligent, logical, and stubborn. She hides behind a tough exterior, but deep down she is caring and kind. June is willing to lay down her life for those she trusts, even if she would never tell them. She was able to admit that she was wrong and even went as far as joining the “enemy” in order to bring justice to her broken world. June showed a high level of maturity, one that we not only as women, but as readers can aspire too.
Cinder - The Lunar Chronicles
Loosely based on the fairytale character Cinderella, it would make sense as to why we would choose to put Cinder on this list. Cinder is the modern and mature version of the timeless character. She is slightly guarded, but compassionate towards her family and friends, she leaves the comfort of her life to bring justice to her broken world. By taking an enormous amount of responsibility that she doesn’t entirely want, Cinder does her best to use her power and relationships for the greater good of her people. Cinder also shows us the importance of asking for help from friends when we need it and sets an amazing example for women of all ages.
Annabeth Chase - Percy Jackson and Olympians
Growing up in a world of powers and monsters with nothing but her wits to survive, there is no doubt that Annabeth is a strong character. She taught us that “even strength must bow to wisdom sometimes”. Annabeth is put into so many impossible scenarios, and is able to think her way out of them. Despite seeming to be largely dependent on her intelligence, she is also a strong woman and fiercely loyal friend. Annabeth taught us to not be afraid to be unapologetically ourselves, and to stand up for what we believe in. She showed us how to never underestimate ourselves or others, because the strongest people are not always who you would expect.