Analysis: Muscles Are Meaningless
In real life
, the size of a muscle is the determining factor in how much force a muscle can produce, as human muscle generally produces a constant amount of force per unit cross sectional area. note
However, a person's strength takes into account significant factors such as neuromuscular response, which is essentially the percentage of muscle fascicles the person can 'recruit' or activate with a signal from the brain.
In works of fiction the writer or artist are not constrained by any such rules, thus a character of diminutive size with no visible muscle may possess enormous strength greater than the biggest burliest men.