"Leave the saving of the world to men?... We don't think so!"

When I was six, my parents took me to see The Incredibles and I thought it was the coolest film ever. It was also one of the first DVDs I ever owned and I watched it pretty much on a loop for a while. So a few weeks ago, age 20 this time, I went to see the sequel and I absolutely loved it!

While watching it, though, I started thinking about how well it explores issues faced by working mums -- especially considering that it's a kids’ movie. I also realised that, in hindsight, Elastigirl was probably one of my first feminist role models (something that might have been lost on six-year-old me).

Elastigirl is a fully fleshed out character (incidentally not only metaphorically but also physically, as many people have pointed out online). She’s a superhero as well as a mum which, as the brilliant Edna Mode observes, is a “heroic act” in itself. In The Incredibles 2, she’s out saving the world while her husband, Mr. Incredible, is stuck at home with the kids. But despite the amount of support she has at home, she still has to make sacrifices, something a lot of working mums are familiar with.

In “Lean In”, Sheryl Sandberg says that “no matter what any of us has -- and how grateful we are for what we have -- no one has it all.” Similarly, in this brilliant letter to her daughters, CEO Sarah Wells tells them “you cannot give everything 100% of you 100% of the time”. And a few days ago, Serena Williams tweeted that she’d cried after missing her daughter’s first steps, something that resonated with a lot of working mums.

I’m 20 and too young to have either a job or kids (as far as I’m concerned, at least). But I hope that, should I need it one day, I’ll have as much support as Elastigirl does in The Incredibles 2. If all women had the support they needed, then they’d be able to do their own super things, which is really important. After all, as Elastigirl says, “leave the saving of the world to men? I don’t think so!”

Ashvini Rae is a 3rd year Politics and International Relations student at the University of York with a keen interest in foreign policy and International Development. She hopes to pursue a career in international human rights (specifically women’s rights) advocacy. One of her aims is to one day do something cool enough that means she’ll get interviewed for Women in Foreign Policy! Read Ashvini’s interview with Larissa Kennedy.