Kate Winter is a writer, artist, and ritualist originally from New England, now living in Eugene, Oregon where she runs Girls Underground, a blog about the Girls Underground archetype in mythology and popular culture. She is the author of Kharis: Hellenic Polytheism Explored and Dwelling on the Threshold: Reflections of a Spirit-Worker and Devotional Polytheist and holds a degree in comparative mythology and ritual from Goddard College.
To kick off Paper Tape’s Underground issue, in this interview with Paper Tape editor Kristy Harding, we talk about what girl underground stories are, their roots in ancient myth, and Kate’s work researching Girls Underground.
PT: What are girl underground stories?
KW: “Girls Underground” is a name I came up with to identify I certain pattern, or archetype, I saw in various stories – as ancient as myth and folklore, and as modern as movies and YA fiction, however with the emphasis being on the more modern examples. The basic plot is that a girl – usually either fairly young, like 7, or a teenager, like 16 – with absent or distant parents, often dissatisfied with her life, makes a choice or wish (or mistake) which propels her on an adventure into another world unlike her own.