Harry Potter actress Emma Watson briefly stepped into another iconic role to promote her latest book club offering: that of Wonder Woman. Having played Hermione Granger in the Harry Potter films and Belle in Disney’s live-action Beauty and the Beast, Watson switched it up recently and donned some familiar Amazonian armor in support of one of her wide array of endeavors.
Watson has kept busy on numerous fronts over the last several years, both in a string of films and in a number of high-profile roles elsewhere, including being appointed the United Nations Women’s Goodwill Ambassador in 2014. Her support for feminist causes also led her to create Our Shared Shelf, a Goodreads group that focuses on feminist writers and themes.
Announcing the newest Our Shared Shelf selection, Watson took to Instagram in full Wonder Woman cosplay (along with an unnervingly convincing face-painted Yoda). Keeping with the Halloween-themed approach, she’s chosen Daphne Du Maurier’s 1938 novel Rebecca. In the short post, she also explains that she chose the novel for its “three well-drawn female characters” and “prophetic feminist themes” as well as its spookiness.
Considered a fine example of the early 20th century Gothic tradition, Rebecca follows a young American woman swept up into marriage with an older English aristocrat. After moving to his palatial estate, she finds that she must contend with not only a hostile housekeeper, but the memory of the aristocrat’s deceased first wife and the secrets that she carried to the grave. The book went on to become an immediate hit and has remained in print ever since.
With its exploration of both powerful and powerless women and evocative descriptions of the haunting Manderley estate, it’s an excellent choice both for Watson’s interest in feminism as well as providing some seasonal scares. And while it may bear little resemblance to the youth-oriented series that made Watson famous, it’s also a quintessentially British novel, bringing ideas of class and history into the mix as well. Watson’s been highly selective with the projects she undertakes, and that’s reflected in the books that she’s promoting with Our Shared Shelf.
Whether for her literary or sartorial choices, the post has been a hit, accumulating over three million likes already. While it does beg the question of what a book club would be like if it included both the Amazonian Princess and the Jedi Master, just the fact that Watson can draw so much attention to great literature while promoting her views on equality and feminism works as an example of using fame to do some good in society. Wonder Woman herself would undoubtedly approve.
Source: Emma Watson
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