Superman Is Jewish?: How Comic Book Superheroes Came to Serve Truth, Justice, and the Jewish-American Way

Superman Is Jewish?: How Comic Book Superheroes Came to Serve Truth, Justice, and the Jewish-American Way

by Harry Brod
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Overview

Superman Is Jewish?: How Comic Book Superheroes Came to Serve Truth, Justice, and the Jewish-American Way by Harry Brod


As brilliant as it is witty, Harry Brod’s surprisingly insightful exposÉ delves into the secret identities of the world’s most famous superheroes.

Zeddy Lawrence once said, “It may not be true in all cases, but it’s a pretty good rule of thumb. If the word ‘man’ appears at the end of someone’s name you can draw one of two conclusions: a) they’re Jewish, as in Goldman, Feldman, or Lipman; or b) they’re a superhero, as in Superman, Batman, or Spider-Man.”

In Superman Is Jewish? Harry Brod reveals the links between Jews and superheroes in a penetrating investigation of iconic comic book figures. He describes how the role of each hero reflects the evolution of the Jewish place in American culture—an alien in a foreign land, like Superman; a figure plagued by guilt for not having saved his family, like Spider-Man; outsiders persecuted for being different (X-Men); a nice, smart guy afraid people won’t like him when he’s angry (the Hulk). Brod blends humor and sharp observation as he considers these well-known figures’ overtly and discreetly Jewish characteristics and talks about how their creators—including Jerry Siegel, Joe Shuster, Stan Lee, and Jack Kirby—integrated their Jewish identities and their creativity. His lively guided tour takes us from the Passover Haggadah’s exciting action scenes of Moses’s superpowers to acclaimed Pulitzer Prize winners and overseas animators.

Brod has written and lectured extensively on this fun and provocative topic and through his expertise explores the deeper story of how one immigrant group can influence the larger culture through entertainment and, in the process, see itself in new, more empowering ways. Not just for Jewish readers or comic book fans, Superman Is Jewish? is a story of America, and is as poignant as it is fascinating.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781416595304
Publisher: Free Press
Publication date: 11/06/2012
Pages: 240
Product dimensions: 6.30(w) x 9.12(h) x 0.88(d)

About the Author


Harry Brod is professor of philosophy and humanities at the University of Northern Iowa. He has appeared on CNN, Today, Geraldo, and other TV and radio programs and his articles have been published in many journals and popular magazines. He is the father of two children and still has his old comic book collection.

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Superman Is Jewish?: How Comic Book Superheroes Came to Serve Truth, Justice, and the Jewish-American Way 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hey
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The title already tells me that its going to be a good book