The Evolution of the Smart Girl Trope

The Smart Girl Trope

In a departure from their usual analysis of a specific film or television show, The Take takes a realistic look at the evolution of the “smart girl” character and the pervasive stereotypical tropes that go along with a high I.Q. Hosts Debra Minoff and Susannah McCullough examine the physical, psychological and sociological histories these tropes, noting how girls of high intelligence were perpetually portrayed as bespectacled, unattractive, unpopular, highly confident and socially awkward, with low self-esteem. Despite this history, however, the smart girl has evolved into a modern character worthy of admiration.

She’s a Smart Girl, and it’s never been cooler to be one, to be proud of what you know and what you can achieve. So how has this archetype evolved, and what does it really mean to be a smart girl today?