Authors and Ambition: Celebrating 85 Years Of Nancy Drew, The Girl Who Started It All

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It is that which forms the foundation for any hero’s ability to save the day. In America, agency for teenage girls in literature made its debut in 1930 in the person of Nancy Drew.

Scholars Janice Radway and Nan Enstad assert that stories like Nancy Drew’s provide girls a “place to dream.” While they highlight romances and the “dime novels” of the pulp era as prominent examples, that “anything is possible” spirit was not limited to those forms.

It was the imaginative energy of that era that propelled Nancy Drew and characters like her into the kinds of stories nobody had ever seen before.’ […]