Superman on the Couch: What Superheroes Really Tell Us about Ourselves and Our Society

Superman on the Couch: What Superheroes Really Tell Us about Ourselves and Our Society

by Danny Fingeroth
     
 

Why are so many of the superhero myths tied up with loss, often violent, of parents or parental figures? What is the significance of the dual identity? What makes some superhuman figures "good" and others "evil"? Why are so many of the prime superheroes white and male? How has the superhero evolved over the course of the 20th and early 21st centuries? And how might

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Overview

Why are so many of the superhero myths tied up with loss, often violent, of parents or parental figures? What is the significance of the dual identity? What makes some superhuman figures "good" and others "evil"? Why are so many of the prime superheroes white and male? How has the superhero evolved over the course of the 20th and early 21st centuries? And how might the myths be changing? Why is it that the key superhero archetypes - Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Spider-Man, the X-Men - touch primal needs and experiences in everyone? Why has the superhero moved beyond the pages of comics into other media? All these topics, and more, are covered in this lively and original exploration of the reasons why the superhero - in comic books, films, and TV - is such a potent myth for our times and culture.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780826415400
Publisher:
Bloomsbury Academic
Publication date:
02/27/2004
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
192
Product dimensions:
5.99(w) x 9.01(h) x 0.49(d)

Table of Contents

Foreword9
1Why Superheroes?13
2It Started with Gilgamesh: The History of the Superhero31
3The Dual Identity: Of Pimpernels and Immigrants from the Stars47
4Storm of the Orphans: Superman, Batman, and Spider-Man63
5Amazon Grace: Wonder Woman, Xena, and Buffy79
6Thermonuclear Families: The Justice League, the S-Men, and the Fantastic Four97
7You Wouldn't Like Me When I'm Angry: The Hulk, Judge Dredd, and Wolverine119
8Changing Voices: From Robin to Spider-Man139
9Values and Villains: What's at Stake?155
10The Future of the Superhero169
Afterword: Getting Personal173
Select Bibliography179
Acknowledgments183
Index185

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