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Why almost every story has a male as the main character?




If you like movies, dramas or novels as entertainment, most of the time, you see the main character in the story is primarily male-centric. If you look at the action, adventure, comedy, romance, crime, Horror, war or animation, you can see that the main character in the story is always surrounded by a Male. The question is why almost every story has a male as the main character? A girl named Mickey at the popular search engine Yahoo, recently raised a similar question. Her question is why is the main character of all stories a boy? Why not a girl? I was sitting in Tokyo Square when I see the question. Indeed, The girl’s question is very logical. Why in the world where no story has ever been perfect without a female character, why should men always be preferred? No sooner had, I started researching her question. I’m starting to see most of the movies that’ve chosen for the Prestizias film awards. Despite, 93% of the story’s main characters are boys! I want to name some successful movies like Titanic, Parasite, The Irishman, Avengers the Endgame, Moonlight, Batman, Superman, Spiderman, The Dark Knight, 1917, Get Out, Joker 2019, Taxi Driver, Black Panther, Psycho, Delta Force, Schindler’s List, Citizen Kane even Porn movies where women should be the main character being showed male stamina, style or timing instead of female. Some stories represent women as only men’s enjoyment products! It makes sense that not only Mickey, but almost every girl also have the same question. Why man gets preference?

To get the answer honestly, I spoke to some South Asian film producers to answer this question. The answers from them are as below:

“Because readers are sexist. Women will read a female or male main character, but men typically will not read a book with a female main character”

Said, famous south Indian screenwriter Krishna Dwaipayana, Tamil Nadu. I have read many novels with both male and female main characters. To me, it isn’t the gender of the main character that determines how well it goes over. That is usually determined by the genre of the book or the story – he added

Jack was the Main character in Titanic Movie

Jessica belongs to Taiwan, student of Flim and art institute, disagree with this. She quoted “It entirely depends on the genre. In YA, protagonists are overwhelmingly female because teenage girls are the main audience demographic. And in anything written before like 1980 (as well as in places with less progressive ideals), you’re dealing with an era of sexism where women were held back from writing and publishing, and in certain periods even prevented/discouraged from reading. If men are writing and reading, those are typically going to be the popular choices for main characters. That still has an influence on modern literature; most of the books you grew up reading in English class probably had male protagonists, so those are seen as more “literary”. There are other factors, like the fact that many men will be turned away by the idea of trying to relate to a female character (whereas women have learned to do it for lack of choice). Male authors are often squeamish at the idea of having to write something that involves romance with a man or find it difficult to write an inner perspective of a female character. Men dominate many publishing companies, which influences what becomes successful.  And my theory is that lots of us see (white) men as a literary “default”; as if to write from any other perspective changes the meaning of the story. Books with protagonists of colour or female MCs are often characterized as “subversive” or “inverting the genre” (female detective stories and mysteries are a prime example). I’m just scratching the surface- this involves centuries of history and literature building up to where we are now.”

Joker, a Male character

Nahidul Islam Mukul, Professional Actor and Trainer, from Bangladesh said –

I’m afraid you’re showing your extremely narrow experience of reading. People who read widely and from a range of time periods and genres know perfectly well that while male MCs do still outnumber females, it’s simply ridiculous to say that ‘almost every story’ has a male main character!

And when you go on to say that with a female Main Character the story is ‘mostly unsuccessful’ you show us again how little you know about the world of stories. Other answers have given you lists of dozens and dozens of extremely successful and well-known novels with female MCs. Many of those were even written by men. Wonder Woman”, “Harley Quinn” can be the best example … Please break out of whatever narrow range of stories you’ve been reading and find the big world of Real Books – he added. Although one of his female student given a counter –

“Of course there are lots of successful and good fictions where a woman is the main character but in general. Everything we see in the movies, most of the really big books have male as the main character”

Annabelle was the main character who was Female

Tina from Kolkata said, By ‘story’ do you mean novel? That is simply not true. You may read more books with male characters (especially if you are male yourself) but this doesn’t mean there are not thousands of successful novels with a female protagonist.

Because a man wrote the book.  More women need to start writing books about failing men. Lol!

Said, Rashedul Haque from Dhaka, Bangladesh. I think this might be true of many of the genres I like but isn’t it rare for the romance genre (the best selling genre) to have a male main character? I have read many novels with both male and female main characters. To me, it isn’t the gender of the main character that determines how well it goes over. That is usually determined by the genre of the book. Mr Haque added

Until the research was finished, I’ve found the facts against the facts, the arguments against the argument. What I understand is that a character male or a female depends on the author’s needs, not gender-based. Yet, in the primary sense, male-based writing is more available. Do you think women are actually being dominated in the story? Reply to the comments. Have a good day and stay safe!


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Al Shahriat Karim also known as Shahriat is a Professional Intellectual Property Law Advisor, Traveler, Freelancer, Author, Columnist, Blogger and Photographer. He loves to meet new people and community around the world and write the experience here. He received "Joy Bangla Youth Award 2019" from the Honorable Chairperson of CRI Mr. Sajeeb Wazed Joy, son of Sheikh Hasina, the Honorable Prime Minister, Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh.

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