Rebel girl names: Badass Girl Names for Your Rebel Princess

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75 Badass Girl Names for Your Little Rebel

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The search for a name is on! If you know you’re having a girl you may want to give her a strong, courageous name that you know will fit her as she grows. Jennifer Moss, founder and CEO of, recommends that you “make sure the name can grow with your child — remember, you’re not just naming a baby, you’re also naming an adult.”

More: 100 Hipster Baby Names That Are Effortlessly Cool

If you’re looking for inspiration for strong female leads then we have a great list below.  These 75 badass names are women who have changed history and bucked against the system to show us that women can achieve anything they put their minds to. In a world where women are gaining power, your daughter might be the next rising star.

Badass Names for Girls that Start with A to E

  1. Ada — 19th century mathemetician Ada Lovelace is widely recognized as the creator of the first computer algorithm. Ada is an incredible role model for girls and women in an industry that is dominated by men.
  2. Alek — If you’re looking for a unique name with an awesome message, Alek is a great choice.  It references Alek Wek, a little girl from Sudan who went on to become a supermodel.  Alek says “You are beautiful. It’s okay to be quirky, it’s fine to be shy. You don’t have to go with the crowd.”  A most perfect message for your little rebel.
  3. Althea — Althea Gibson was the first African American woman to play at Wimbledon. She changed history and paved the way for two others on our list, Serena and Venus Williams.
  4. Amelia — Amelia Earhart was the first woman to fly solo over the Atlantic. She is a badass who broke records and changed history.
  5. Angela — Angela Vorobeva is the oldest woman to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, showing us once again how badass women can be.
  6. Angelina — Angelina Jolie is a well-known actress, filmmaker and humanitarian. A self-proclaimed badass, we agree that she is a great role model for your little one. 
  7. Anne — Anne Frank is one of the most well known victims of the Holocaust. Her writing outlived her, and has provided inspiration for many young girls.
  8. Aretha — Aretha Franklin was the first female to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and is well known for her song “Respect.” A true badass demands respect, and we think Aretha is a name that symbolizes such.
  9. Beretta — Whether you own guns or not, it doesn’t get much more badass than naming your daughter after the famous firearm. Beretta has a pretty ring to it as a girl’s name.
  10. Bessie — Bessie Coleman overcame racial discrimination and become the first American female to earn an international pilot’s license. She performed stunt flying shows and used her talent to fight for racial equity.
  11. Betty — Betty Friedan co-founded the National Organization for Women. With her support many women have found a way to break out of their traditional roles and discover new opportunities.
  12. Buffy — A fictional character, but Buffy the Vampire Slayer was a no-nonsense fearless warrior. Her aptitude and strength made her the perfect badass.
  13. Carol — Perhaps better known as Captain Marvel, Carol is more than just a superhero, she is known for her intelligence, aptitude and strength, all assets of a badass to name your girl after.
  14. Clara — Clara Barton, known as the “Angel of the Battlefield,” founded the American Red Cross, which continues to make a difference in many people’s lives today.
  15. Catharine — Catharine the Great was Russia’s longest-standing female leader.  Women in power are well known for their badass qualities.
  16. Chanel — Coco Chanel is a well known fashionista. Starting in a small shop in the 1900s, her line is still well known and a leading label in the industry today. Coco paved the way for many, and her legacy would make a great name for your little rebel.
  17. Condoleezza — If you’re looking for a unique name, former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is a powerful female to name your daughter after.
  18. Eleanor — Eleanor Roosevelt was not just a passive first lady, she used her position of power to advocate for women and children. She pushed against social norms to fight for what was right, and is an excellent role model for your little one.
  19. Elizabeth — Elizabeth Blackwell was the first woman to earn a medical degree from an American medical school. She held her own among men and showed women that they are just as capable of achieving great things.
  20. Ella — Ella Fitzgerald was the first African American female to win a Grammy, and walked away that year with two. Ella changed history, and your little girl might too.
  21. Ellen — Ellen DeGeneres is most well known for her talk show, standing up for LGBTQ rights, and encouraging viewers to be good to one another and spread kindness. Her comedic approach while taking on tough topics makes her a wonderful role model for your little ones.
  22. Ember — A name meaning smouldering coal, this would make a perfect name for a little girl full of spark and fire.
  23. Emmeline — Emmeline Pankhurst was a member of the Suffragettes and fought to get women the right to vote in the UK. She had a hand in changing history and is well respected because of that.
  24. Estée —  Estée Lauder is one of the wealthiest self-made women in the world, well known for her cosmetics line. She is a true embodiment of hard work and dedication, both great qualities for women looking to change the world.

Badass Names for Girls that Start with F to L

  1. Florence — Florence Nightingale went against all odds and became a war-hero nurse. She not only came home a hero for her work during the Crimean War, but also went on to improve healthcare worldwide, making her a true badass!
  2. Frida — Frida Kahlo is not only a famous artist, but she is also known for standing strong against social issues such as LGBTQ rights and feminism. She is a wonderful role model for girls and women alike.
  3. Gabriela — Gabriela Mistral was the first Latin American author to earn a Nobel Prize. Her accomplishments are remembered and her success is due to her perseverance, admirable traits for girls to look up to.
  4. Gloria — Gloria Steinem is known as a leader in the American feminist movement.  She co-founded Ms. magazine and is a perfect example that women and girls can do anything.
  5. Grace — Grace Hopper was one of the first women to earn a PhD in mathematics.  She is well known for her work developing code for computers. She pushed forward and achieved great things even with adversity against her.
  6. Greta — Greta Thunberg is a Swedish environmental activist who gained world recognition at a very young age for her work to bring attention to climate change.  She is the perfect example of young women standing up for what is right and fighting for causes dear to them.
  7. Halle — Halle Berry is the only African American female to win an Oscar for Best Actress. Her hard work and accomplishment are a perfect example for young girls.
  8. Harley — Your little rebel may end up loving motorcycles with a badass name like Harley-Davidson.
  9. Harriet — Harriet Beecher Stowe is well known for her anti-slavery work.  Her books helped to spark the American Civil War.
  10. Helen — Helen Keller was a deaf and blind social activist. She overcame huge deficits and still dedicated her life to helping others, making her a truly inspiring badass.
  11. Hera — Queen of the Gods, Hera is a mythical badass.
  12. Hillary — Former US Senator and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is the first woman chosen to run for President.  Even though she didn’t win the race, she has inspired many women and girls that they are capable of anything.
  13. Indira — Indira Gandhi was India’s first female prime minister. She paved the way for future female leaders and led her country with admirable strength.
  14. Jane — Jane Austen was an author made famous in the 1700’s when most literary work was predominately male driven. Her work, such as Sense and Sensibility and Pride and Prejudice, is still well known today. 
  15. Jean — Jean Grey has superhuman powers and is perhaps one of the most powerful X-Men. Known for her telepathic powers, Jean is a name that signifies strength, complexity and power, and she is a pretty badass female lead.
  16. Joan — Joan of Arc was a French martyr. She was an advisor to the French military, a role usually completed by men, and yet she held her own and made a name for herself.
  17. Junko — If you’re looking for a name that symbolizes physical strength and perseverance, look no further than Junko Tabei, the first female to reach the summit of Mount Everest, something only a handful of people will accomplish in their lifetime.
  18. Karma — It would be pretty badass to have a name like Karma. What goes around does come back around.
  19. Kat — Kat Gunn dominates in a male industry and is the highest-earning female gamer in the world. We love that she kicks ass at video games and holds her own among her male counterparts.
  20. Katharine — Katharine Hepburn is not only known for her acting, but also her independent streak. She let the world know that women can do anything they put their mind to, and we love that!
  21. Katniss — If you’re looking for something unique, Katniss Everdeen from the Hunger Games is certainly a badass your little one is sure to aspire to be like.
  22. Lucille — Lucille Ball is most known for her role in I Love Lucy.  Known as a top comedian, Lucille bucked against the system and showed us that women are definitely capable of achieving great things.

Badass Names for Girls that Start with M to Z

  1. Madeleine — Madeleine Albright was the first female Secretary of State, appointed under the Clinton administration. She shows us that women can achieve positions of leadership and be successful, and she is a real role model for girls.
  2. Madonna — Considered the most successful female musician of all time, Madonna is a household name. We love her badass attitude and dedication to her craft.
  3. Mae — Dr. Mae Jemison was the first African American female astronaut.  She was a true badass, showing us the women can do anything!
  4. Margaret — Margaret Thatcher was Britain’s first female prime minister. We admire women in leadership positions, and this is a strong name to give your little one.
  5. Marie — Marie Curie is not only one of the most famous scientists of all time, but she was the first female to win a Nobel Prize. What a badass!
  6. Maud — Maud Stevens Wagner is the first female tattooist in the US, a pretty badass career!
  7. Meryl — Meryl Streep holds the record for most Oscar nominations. Her perseverance shows us that women can do just about anything they put their minds to.
  8. Michelle — Michelle Kwan is the most decorated figure skater in American History. She has achieved amazing accolades and gives such a strong foundation for girls to accomplish their dreams.
  9. Misty — Misty Copeland was the first African American female principal ballerina in the American Ballet Theater. She is dominating in her craft and speaks out about supporting young girls and diversification.
  10. Munroe — Better known as Storm from X-Men, Ororo Munroe is a well known leader and badass. If you know your little rebel will take the world by storm, this might be a good name choice for you.
  11. Nadia — Nadia Murad is the first Iraqi to receive a Nobel Peace Prize. Her work to end human trafficking is admirable, and her fight for women makes her a true badass.
  12. Naomi — Naomi Parker is a famous icon you would likely recognize on a poster in her red bandana and the saying “We Can Do It”.  Naomi is the perfect reminder of strength and perseverance.
  13. Oprah — Oprah Winfrey is a hugely influential female. She started her career as the first and youngest African-American woman to anchor a newscast in the city of Nashville. We love that she paved the way for other young girls and continues to give back with motivation and incredible amounts of charity work.
  14. Pamela — Poison Ivy, or Pamela, toes the line between hero and villain.  If you’re looking for a fictional badass to name your child after, Pamela would make a great choice.
  15. Rebel — Why not name your little Rebel, Rebel? It’s working well for Rebel Wilson, a current actress, comedian, writer and producer.
  16. Retta — Retta Scott was the first female animator at Disney, and she blazed the way for the future of many other little girls!
  17. Ronda — Ronda Rousey is the first female to be inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame, among other accomplishments. She has shown that women can achieve great things in a male dominated sport, and her fighting makes her a real badass.
  18. Rosa — Rosa Parks is a name almost anyone can recognize, made famous for her refusal to give up her seat on a bus which sparked the Civil Rights Movement. A true badass, Rosa teaches girls and women never to give up in the fight for what is right.
  19. Ruth — Ruth Bader Ginsburg was an associate justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. She was also the co-founder of the Women’s Rights Project at the ACLU, and fought tirelessly for women’s rights.
  20. Sally — Sally Ride was the first American woman in outer space, changing history and leveling the playing field for future astronauts!
  21. Sandra — Justice Sandra Day O’Connor was the first female Supreme Court Justice, and she is definitely a great role model for strong little girls.
  22. Serena — Serena Williams is a world renowned American tennis player. Serena is known for her hard work and power, as well as her world records. 
  23. Sheryl — Sheryl Swoopes is known as the “female Michael Jordan.” She was the first female to be signed into the WNBA, and she paved the road for future basketball stars. She defied odds and is a true sports badass.
  24. Storm — Better known as Storm from X-Men, Ororo Munroe is a well known leader and badass. If you know your little rebel will take the world by storm, this might be a good name choice.
  25. Susan — Susan B. Anthony is most known for championing women’s suffrage.  While she wasn’t able to live long enough to legally vote, when the 19th Amendment was finally ratified it was named after her.
  26. Tempest — A violently windy storm, Tempest would make a great name for your little spitfire.
  27. Venus — Venus Williams is a world renowned American tennis player.  She formerly held #1 in both singles and doubles, and is considered one of the all-time greats in women’s tennis.
  28. Wilma — Wilma Rudolph overcame many childhood illnesses and became a three-time gold medalist in the 1960 Olympics, the first woman to ever do so.  She’s a true badass who teaches us that you can overcome disadvantages and still accomplish incredible things.
  29. Xena — A fictional character, but Xena the Warrior Princess is still an incredibly strong female role model for your little one.

For more baby name inspiration check out these popular baby name lists:

  • Top 1000 Most Popular Baby Girl Names in the U.S.
  • Top 1000 Most Popular Baby Boy Names in the U.S.
  • The 100 Coolest Baby Names in the World

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About the author

Jennifer Caffelle

About Jennifer

Jennifer is currently working for a US-wide health care system, Jennifer has worked professionally for 13+ years in the fields of early education and leadership, including in the role of Director with the international edu

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148 Badass Girl Names — Baby Chick

Are you expecting a baby girl? If a cute or flowery girl name isn’t your style, a badass girl name may be just what you’re looking for. This baby name list is full of names for girls that have the cool-girl vibe that you just know will fit your little one’s personality. You might want an older name with plenty of sass, like Maxine or Matilda. There are also plenty of modern choices to pick from, like Luxe or Sloane, that made our list of badass girl names. Or perhaps, a name with a literary reference like Katniss, or one inspired by nature, like Stormie, is more your style.

Badass baby girl names are perfect if you want an edgy, unique name that will stand out. Read on for our list of favorite badass names for girls.

Older Badass Girl Names

Yes, even a traditional name can still give off a badass vibe. Selecting an old-fashioned name with unexpected consonants that is less common (like Beatrix or Hildegarde) can have a strong, tough, yet feminine feeling. Maybe it’s my generation, but names like Brittany and Tiffany (also with the cool nicknames Britt, Britty, and Tiff) make me think “super cool girl” and would make a great name for a new
little girl!

Some of these modern names may have been traditionally used for a boy, like Jude or Dexter, but when given to a girl, they sound even tougher. Check out these traditional girl names that make us think badass.

1. Beatrix

2. Bernadette

3. Blake

4. Blanche

5. Brittany

6. Clarke

7. Cordelia

8. Devin

9. Dexter

10. Dominique

11. Ezra

12. Frankie

13. Gertrude

14. George

15. Harriet

16. Hildegard

17. Imogene

18. Jude

19. Maeve

20. Matilda

21. Millicent

22. Maxine

23. Octavia

24. Ramona

25. Roxanne/Roxy

26. Stevie

27. Tiffany

28. Veronica

Modern Badass Girl Names

If you’re looking for a modern name that gives a don’t mess with me vibe, we’ve got our favorites here. Some modern names, like Bexley or Seven, sound tough with their unique letter combinations. Names like Luxe and Bronze also sound badass because of their rich meaning. And who would mess with a girl named Harley or Ripley? Read our favorite modern badass names for girls.

1. Aries

2. Atlas

3. Avril

4. Bentley

5. Bexley

6. Blaze/Blaise

7. Blue

8. Bristol

9. Bronze

10. Cashmere

11. Denim

12. Dextra

13. Domino

14. Ebony

15. Echo

16. Ember

17. Eureka

18. Harley

19. Hendrix

20. Huxley

21. Jazz

22. Jetta

23. Jovie

24. Legacy

25. Lennon

26. Lennox

27. Lexis/Lexus

28. Liberty

29. Lux/Luxe

30. Marlowe

31. Maxima

32. Moxie

33. Olympia

34. Pandia

35. Parvati

36. Petra

37. Rebel

38. Remi/Remy

39. Remington

40. Revel

41. Ripley

42. Rogue

43. Rumer

44. Seven

45. Sloane

46. Tempest/Temp

47. Torrent

48. Vesper

49. Vey

50. Zeda

Real World Badass Girl Names

There’s no better place to find a badass girl name than out in the real world. Whether it’s a location, like Phoenix, or a nature reference, like Timber, these names pack plenty of attitude. We love how names like Night and Ember have a darker, mysterious feel while still being feminine. And again, you’ll see unusual consonants mixed in with outdoor-inspired names like Winter and Zephyr. Here are our favorite badass girl names inspired by the real world.

1. Alaska

2. Amazon

3. Arizona

4. Breeze

5. Chicago

6. Crimson

7. Electra

8. Galaxy

9. Gemma

10. Gemini

11. Indy

12. Indigo

13. Jupiter

14. Memphis

15. Milan

16. Night

17. Nova

18. Ocean

19. Phoenix

20. Raven

21. Salem

22. Scarlett

23. Stormy/Stormie

24. Tennessee

25. Timber

26. Venus

27. Wilder

28. Winter

29. Zephyr

30. Zinnia

Literary and Screen-Inspired Badass Girl Names

So many great girl names come from books, movies, and mythology. The personalities of these well-known tough girls make these some of the best badass names for girls around. Whether one of the good girls (Briar is Sleeping Beauty’s real name) or from the darker side (Bellatrix is my favorite antagonist from Harry Potter), these names are all unique and bring a don’t-mess-with-me vibe.

1. Andromeda

2. Aphrodite

3. Athena

4. Bellatrix

5. Briar

6. Buffy

7. Cleo/Cleopatra

8. Coraline

9. Delilah

10. Eleven

11. Guinevere

12. Hermione

13. Juno

14. Katniss

15. Khaleesi

16. Miley

17. Pandora

18. Sabrina

19. Scout

20. Ursula

21. Vesper

22. Wednesday

23. Xena

24. Zelda

25. Zora

Badass Girl Names from Powerful Positions

There’s nothing more badass than holding a high position of power. Check out this list of the best badass girl names from high ranks and special callings.

1. Baroness

2. Countess

3. Contessa

4. Godiva

5. Halo

6. Hero

7. Kingsley

8. Lourdes

9. Major

10. Marquessa

11. Queena

12. Queenie

13. Reign

14. Royal

15. Saint

Are you going to use a badass name for your new little girl? Whether you want something tough by definition, has rare letter combinations, or is simply a contemporary name with an edge, we hope you found the name that’s perfect for your sassy little girl.

Check out our other baby name lists if you are still on the baby name hunt. Try the coolest girl names, one-syllable girl names, or rare girl names for inspiration. Good luck picking out the right one for your baby-to-be!

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The most beautiful and modern names for a boy and a girl in 2018


Many sources claim that the name can affect the fate of a person. It is still impossible to prove or disprove this with a 100% guarantee. But every parent strives to give his baby a beautiful and, in his opinion, harmonious name.

Now more and more often you can hear around unusual names that came to us from abroad or «extracted» from old books. Even in society, children with rare names are no longer reacted as sharply as they were ten years ago. It seems that such a variety simplifies the task of naming your baby. But this is not the case: a wide choice complicates the decision-making process. Sometimes, it is even difficult to narrow down the circle to two or three options.

How to choose a good name for a child

There are a number of criteria that will help parents make the right choice. The beauty of the sound of the full version may not be enough. The following should be analyzed:

  • name origin;
  • short form euphony;
  • compatibility with a surname;
  • meaning, translation and more.

Often parents choose names based on family customs. For example, one name may be passed down from generation to generation, or two may alternate. Or parents, by coincidence, have names that begin with the same letter. They may wish to retain this feature and name the child with this in mind.

If we talk about fashion trends, then the trend is old Slavic, international and even short names that are entered in documents. Among the latter are Marusya, Sasha, Lena, Kit and others. Even made-up names are no longer a rarity.

If the idea came to invent a name on your own, then you should take into account the combination of each of the syllables of the word and its full sound. The chosen or invented word should be melodic. Its purpose is to emphasize the character that parents would like to see in a child. Or focus on some visible features of the baby. For example, red hair or big eyes.

Fashionable and beautiful names for boys

It is believed that a beautiful name is of great importance only for a girl. However, parents are seriously puzzled in the process of naming the boy. It is at this moment that fathers and mothers seek to lay in the child some traits that will need to be developed in the future. Therefore, most of the names chosen for male babies mean nobility, masculinity, strength, courage, intelligence and the ability to protect the weak.

Among the usual male names, their own variations appeared, designed to make these words more refined and original. This is due to a new generation of young parents who are fighting for the uniqueness of everything related to their offspring. So all kinds of Maximus, Alejandro and Damiana are born.

The desire to bring foreign chic into the mediocrity of Russian reality gave birth among Ivans and Sergeyevs to countless Alens, Bernards, Daniels, Jules, Laurents, Lucas, Mathieus, Nathans, Pierres and others, undoubtedly attracting the attention of boys. Parents with such a violent fantasy should take into account that Francisco Ivanov or Günter Semenov will cause nothing but laughter from classmates. Even adults will not be able to calmly respond to such combinations.

For those who have not yet decided on a name for a male baby, we can recommend the following list of suitable for our region and at the same time beautiful names:

  • Alexander;
  • Matvey;
  • Oleg;
  • Oscar;
  • Pavel;
  • Alexey;
  • Bogdan;
  • Peter;
  • Anatoly;
  • Andrey;
  • Daniel;
  • Vladimir;
  • Arkady;
  • Arseniy;
  • Vitaly;
  • Vlad;
  • Vyacheslav;
  • Gleb;
  • Gregory;
  • David;
  • Denis;
  • Egor;
  • Zahar;
  • Ivan;
  • Ignat;
  • Eugene;
  • Artem;
  • Igor;
  • Leo;
  • Luca;
  • Makar;
  • Marine;
  • Arthur;
  • Vadim;
  • Valery;
  • Roman;
  • Stanislav;
  • Stepan;
  • Ilya;
  • Joseph;
  • Kuzma;
  • Philip;
  • Edward;
  • Laurel;
  • Victor;
  • Fedor;
  • Dmitry;
  • Kirill;
  • Nikita;
  • Svyatoslav;
  • Yuri.

More original will be Milan, Raphael, Alain, Dobromir, Demyan, Elisha, Aurelius, Mark, Julian.

Choosing a name for a girl

When a girl is born, parents also face a difficult task. During adolescence, girls are more likely than boys to say that they do not like their name. Of course, you can make a reference to the rebellious age and whims, but still, you should take care in advance that the child himself likes the name.

An interesting fact: Roman women most often did not have their own name. They were honored only with a generic name or the so-called cognomen of the husband. In Greece, quite the opposite: every girl born was given a completely new name.

The choice of an euphonious name for everyone is absolutely subjective. Someone likes Elena, while the other is delighted with Praskovya. Increasingly, on the streets of cities you can meet Lada or Evdokia. Among the most popular female names today:

  • Angelina;
  • Veronica;
  • Zoya;
  • Alice;
  • Alina;
  • Bella;
  • Anastasia;
  • Faith;
  • Alexandrina;
  • Dina;
  • Eva;
  • Vladislav;
  • Daria;
  • Irina;
  • Veronica;
  • Zoya;
  • Eugene;
  • Yvonne;
  • Adeline;
  • Kira;
  • Valeria;
  • Xenia;
  • Irma;
  • Elena;
  • Vasilisa;
  • Claudia;
  • Lada;
  • Inga;
  • Love;
  • Lydia;
  • Galina;
  • Elizabeth;
  • Zara;
  • Milena;
  • Lyme;
  • Christina;
  • Lana;
  • Inessa;
  • Caroline;
  • Dana;
  • Lily;
  • Jeanne;
  • Catherine;
  • Vlad;
  • Ludmila;
  • Melana;
  • Agatha;
  • Barbara;
  • Marianne;
  • Ariadne;
  • Evdokia;
  • Daniella;
  • Amelia;
  • Violetta;
  • Alena;
  • Alexandra;
  • Kira;
  • Margarita.

Among French names:

  • Bridget;
  • Louise;
  • Natalie;
  • Virginie;
  • Leah;
  • Isabelle;
  • Nicole.


  • Andrea;
  • Dolores;
  • Dominga;
  • Isabel;
  • Maria;
  • Pilar;
  • Sarah;
  • Khesenia;
  • Josefa.


  • Amalia;
  • Astrid;
  • Barbara;
  • Henrietta;
  • Ingrid;
  • Irma;
  • Linda;
  • March;
  • Renata.


  • Abigel;
  • Angelina;
  • Beatrice;
  • Grace;
  • Laura;
  • Melissa;
  • Hilary;
  • Cheryl.

Popular Russian names

The choice of foreign names is extremely wide. But for harmony, it is still better to consider those that are more familiar to the Russian ear. These do not have to be native Russian names. You can use those that originated from Greek or Jewish culture, but have already firmly settled in the minds of the Russian people.

Especially popular among them are:

  • Anastasia;
  • Alexander;
  • Elena;
  • Sofia;
  • Maxim;
  • Michael;
  • Sergey.

They have been chosen for children for many decades, which makes the names traditional. Over the past few years, you can notice a surge in the popularity of the names Trofim, Evdokia, Matvey, Prokhor, Seraphim. This is explained by the fact that fashion is cyclical and Zabava and Lubomyra appear more and more often among children.

The main thing, when choosing a beautiful and original name, is to keep the measure. Only in this case, the child, regardless of gender, will feel comfortable throughout his life.

Bad Girls These women’s gangs terrorized the streets of Japan. Now films and anime are dedicated to them: Phenomena: Values: Lenta.

ru continues to talk about the aesthetics of street gangs and organized crime groups, as well as their influence on mainstream fashion. In the last article, we talked about the gang of shoplifters Lolife, who influenced the development of all hip-hop fashion. Today we will talk about sukeban — Japanese female street gangs.

Japanese criminal culture has always been very different from the European one. If in the West crime tried not to come out of the shadows and existed in parallel with ordinary life, then in Japan the yakuza did not hesitate to open their offices, conduct their activities openly and not particularly hide. Youth gangs were taken for granted. Like schoolchildren drinking beer in the hallways — they say, who in their youth has not done stupid things?

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The attitude of law enforcement officers towards young criminals has always been much softer than in other countries of the world, and they usually tried not to bring the case to a real prison term. As a result, two parallel criminal structures emerged in the country — the organized yakuza mafia and spontaneous street gangs of youth. At the same time, some young people dreamed of breaking out of frivolous hooligan parties and joining a real mafia.

In the early 1960s, bancho gangs appeared on the streets of cities in the Kanto region, the most urbanized part of the island of Honshu, all-male street gangs that engaged in shoplifting, street theft and other petty crimes. Since they did not take girls into their ranks, and sometimes robbed and beat them, the bancho soon had gender antipodes — sukeban, which consisted exclusively of girls. The word sukeban itself is translated from Japanese as a boss girl.

Feminists above the law

Initially, sukeban were small gangs of schoolgirls who protected other girls from the bancho and took part in fights, and then they stole, robbed and engaged in robbery. Quite quickly, sukeban gangs grew to a respectable size, and by the beginning of the 1970s, even real female criminal gangs appeared in Kanto, the largest of which was the Kanto Women’s Crime Union. The group included up to 20,000 girls, the union had its own president and governing council.

As is often the case in a criminal environment, the girls quickly developed their own code of honor and punishment for its violation, ranging from cauterization of the skin with cigarettes and ending with a public flogging for betrayal. The latter also included a relationship with a guy who had previously dated another sukeban. In addition to the code of honor, the sukeban also had its own strict dress code, which had to be strictly followed.

The sukeban was based on a female school uniform. Long pleated skirts, jackets or vests, red scarves, white stockings and high heels. At the same time, outerwear was specially shortened in order to leave the part of the abdomen exposed. It is noteworthy that the appearance of the sukeban was a kind of antithesis that was gaining strength in 1960s of the sexual revolution. Even in conservative Japan, young girls began to wear jeans and miniskirts, the short skirt was traditionally part of the Japanese school uniform, but the sukeban deliberately rejected the exploitation of female sexuality long before the general fight against objectification.

The girls also used a minimum of cosmetics. The main weapons of the sukeban were blades, heavy chains, needles and baseball bats, and the favorite toy was the yo-yo. Over time, the style of bandits has somewhat transformed. With the advent of biker girls among the sukeban, leather pants and jackets came into fashion, as well as decorating clothes with metal accessories. The second trend was the use of national Japanese motifs like images of sakura, tigers, geishas and traditional ornaments on jackets. This was the response of the sukeban to the fashion for everything American, which literally took over Japan in 1960s.

Poster and cover girls

In the 1970s, the topic of sukeban and female crime quickly infiltrated Japanese popular culture. First, mangas began to be dedicated to bandits, and then films. Fortunately, the directors’ interest in the topic of sukeban coincided with the peak of popularity of «pink eiga» — pink films. This phrase in Japan is called films dedicated to women in criminal circumstances, with a large number of scenes of violence and erotica.

Pinky violence films, also known as Pinky Eiga, are the studios’ answer to the growing popularity of television. What could not be shown on TV due to age restrictions could well pass on the screens. The first feature film of this style is considered to be «Vision» by Tetsuji Takechi, released on screens in 1964 year. But the directors turned to the topic of sukeban only in the 1970s, when the Toei Company began to shoot Pinky violence films.

So the classic of the genre Norifumi Suzuki in 1971-1974 shot a whole series of «Sukeban»: «Sukeban Guerilla», «Sukeban Blues», «Sukeban Blues: Revenge» and others. The films of the Horrible School for Girls series are also devoted to the theme of bad high school students. At the same time, there are not so many real sukeban gangs left on the streets of Kanto, and the word bancho completely became almost obsolete by the end of the decade.

By the end of the 1970s, the popularity of Pinky violence also faded. Cinemas in Japan, following the United States, began to be positioned as places for family vacations, and films running in them had to be free from violence and sexual scenes. The two main stars of the genre, Reiko Ike and Miki Sugimoto, could not find themselves in the new cinematic reality and essentially ended their careers.

Sukeban forever

In 1979, From One Night Carnival was published by photographer Fumiyaka Fukuda, dedicated to the subcultures of Japan. A large place in it is given to sukeban, which by that time had practically disappeared and completely lost its criminal component. The latest surge of interest in the topic of sukeban in Japan is the drama (TV series) «Sukeban Deka», which was released on screens at 1985-1987.

The drama was based on a popular manga in the second half of the 1970s and was a hit with viewers. However, the attempt to enter the same water twice failed — the anime, released in 1991, lasted only two episodes of 50 minutes each. After that, the sukeban was forgotten on the islands for almost 15 years.

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Bikers have become the main subculture for bad girls: leather, bandanas, chains, heavy boots, their own code of honor, their own cult bars and petty crimes. Biker girls have been part of sukeban culture since the 19The 60s, which had a certain impact on the appearance of gang members, but the real heyday of women’s biker clubs and women’s biker gangs came in the late 1980s.

However, the legacy of the sukeban and the Pinku Eiga proved to be very strong. Robert Rodriguez, Quentin Tarantino and Edgar Wright have never hidden that they are fans of Pinky violence films and have repeatedly quoted them in their work. For example, the plot of the movie Kill Bill is typical of the Japanese genre, and the fight scene between Beatrix Kiddo (Uma Thurman) and O-Ren Ishii (Lucy Liu) in The House of Blue Leaves is a reference to the legendary battle from the movie Sex and the Fury. , in which the naked heroine Reiko Ike fights the yakuza in a snowy courtyard.

Chiaki Kuriyama’s character Gogo Yubari, Ishii’s bodyguard, is a typical sukeban. Tarantino’s only departure from the canonical image of a bandit girl is a short tartan skirt instead of the traditional long pleated skirt.

In modern Japan, the sukeban has become a kind of subculture. Girls, inspired by the rebellious spirit and the charm of militant feminism, copy the appearance of school gang members, but, of course, do nothing illegal. Instead, long skirts, a sailor suit, jackets, red scarves and yo-yos have become a symbol of Japanese youth feminism, the struggle for women’s independence and their equality with men.

It all started in 2005, when popular actress and stand-up comedian Yakkun Sakurazuka introduced Sukeban Kyoko, her alter ego, who became the protagonist of many of her numbers. Sukeban Kyoko is a typical boss girl with all the external trappings. The unchanging shinai, a bamboo sword used to practice traditional katana fencing to minimize possible damage to a sparring partner, gave originality to the image. However, street gangs often use it as an alternative to a baseball bat.

Sukeban also entered the fashion world. So, at the Madrid Fashion Week in 2016, the house of Maria Ke Fisherman presented a collection inspired by the aesthetics of Japanese women’s gangs.

By alexxlab

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