Watchmen and Philosophy: A Rorschach Test (The Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture Series)

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Overview

Alan Moore's Watchmen is set in 1985 and chronicles the alternative history of the United States where the US edges dangerously closer to nuclear war with the Soviet Union. Within this world exists a group of crime busters, who don elaborate costumes to conceal their identity and fight crime, and an intricate plot to kill and discredit these "superheroes."

Alan Moore's Watchmen popularized the graphic novel format, has been named one of Time magazine's top 100 novels, and is now...

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Overview

Alan Moore's Watchmen is set in 1985 and chronicles the alternative history of the United States where the US edges dangerously closer to nuclear war with the Soviet Union. Within this world exists a group of crime busters, who don elaborate costumes to conceal their identity and fight crime, and an intricate plot to kill and discredit these "superheroes."

Alan Moore's Watchmen popularized the graphic novel format, has been named one of Time magazine's top 100 novels, and is now being made into a highly anticipated movie adaptation. This latest book in the popular Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture series peers into Moore's deeply philosophical work to parse and deconstruct the ethical issues raised by Watchmen's costumed adventurers, their actions, and their world. From nuclear destruction to utopia, from governmental authority to human morality and social responsibility, it answers questions fans have had for years about Watchmen's ethical quandaries, themes, and characters.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
First published in 1986, Alan Moore's alternate reality epic Watchmen has come to be regarded as the seminal comic book work of all-time. Time even rated it among the 100 Best English Language Novels of all time. This addition to the Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture Series views the graphic novel classic from a new direction; or, to be more accurate, from 15 new directions. In over a dozen original essays, philosophers explore the deep implications of Watchmen. Sample titles: "Rorschach: When Telling the Truth is Wrong," "The Superman Exists, and He's American: Morality in the Face of Absolute Power," and, one of our favorites, "The Virtues of Nite Owl's Potbelly."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780470396858
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 1/20/2009
  • Series: Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture Series , #6
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 240
  • Sales rank: 932,765
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Mark D. White is an associate professor in the Department of Political Science, Economics, and Philosophy at the College of Staten Island/CUNY and coeditor of Batman and Philosophy.
William Irwin is a professor of philosophy at King's College. He originated the philosophy and popular culture genre of books as coeditor of the bestselling The Simpsons and Philosophy and has overseen recent titles, including Batman and Philosophy, House and Philosophy, and Watchmen and Philosophy.

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Table of Contents

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS: They Left It Entirely in My Hands.

Introduction: A Rorschach Test.

PART ONE: THE POLITICS OF POWER: WHO WATCHES THE WATCHMEN?

1 The Superman Exists, and He’s American: Morality in the Face of Absolute Power (Christopher Robichaud).

2 Can We Steer This Rudderless World? Kant, Rorschach, Retributivism, and Honor (Jacob M. Held).

3 Super-Vigilantes and the Keene Act (Tony Spanakos).

4 Superheroes and Supermen: Finding Nietzsche’s Übermensch in Watchmen (J. Keeping).

PART TWO: THE VEIDT PLAN: WATCHMEN AND ETHICS.

5 Means, Ends, and the Critique of Pure Superheroes (J. Robert Loftis).

6 The Virtues of Nite Owl’s Potbelly (Mark D. White).

7 Rorschach: When Telling the Truth Is Wrong (Alex Nuttall).

PART THREE: THE METAPHYSICS OF DR. MANHATTAN.

8 Dr. Manhattan, I Presume? (James DiGiovanna).

9 A Timely Encounter: Dr. Manhattan and Henri Bergson (Christopher M. Drohan).

10 Free Will and Foreknowledge: Does Jon Really Know What Laurie Will Do Next, and Can She Do Otherwise? (Arthur Ward).

11 I’m Just a Puppet Who Can See the Strings: Dr. Manhattan as a Stoic Sage (Andrew Terjesen).

PART FOUR: THIS IS NOT YOUR FATHER’S COMIC BOOK.

12 “Why Don’t You Go Read a Book or Something?” Watchmen as Literature (Aaron Meskin).

13 Watchwomen (Sarah Donovan and Nick Richardson).

14 Hooded Justice and Captain Metropolis: The Ambiguously Gay Duo (Robert Arp).

15 What’s So Goddamned Funny? The Comedian and Rorschach on Life’s Way (Taneli Kukkonen).

CONTRIBUTORS: Who Writes about the Watchmen?

I N DEX: After the Masquerade.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 12 )
Rating Distribution

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(3)

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 13 of 12 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 9, 2010

    really good

    gave me a really great inside look into the whole consept of the watchmen unbscure world>

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 24, 2013

    Does the movie have a ton of sex or language in it?

    Please answer.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 2, 2013

    Whoa!

    Just as grate maby even better than the movie!!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 5, 2012

    From the play oklahoma

    Makin up a few purties aint agnst no law I know of. But dont you wish ther was a rig lke that though? Then you can go to the play party an do a hoe down till mornin if ya was up to it...then id lift you up on that surrey and hop up ther with ya, and just point the horses home. ...I can pitcher the hole thing now.

    -Curly

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 13, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    This book is great.

    This book helps you understand Watchmen better. It is an excellent book.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 19, 2009

    Enjoyable For The Most Part!

    An enjoyable read for any Watchmen fan. Although I felt like there must of been some essays that would have been better than the ones that were actually included - like the first one on Dr. Manhattan. I found myself arguing with the writer after the first paragraph. But for the most part I liked the essays...they provided some interesting food for thought.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 27, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 21, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted June 7, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 21, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 13, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 3, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 3, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing 1 – 13 of 12 Customer Reviews

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