Do the Gods Wear Capes? Spirituality, Fantasy, and Superheroes

ISBN-10: 082644198X
ISBN-13: 9780826441980
Edition: 2011
Authors: Ben Saunders
List price: $30.95 Buy it from $30.77
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Description: Ben Saunders shows that Superhero comics address deep emotional needs. From their earliest days, Superheroes have engaged with some of the most profound spiritual questions that a human being can face: What does it mean to be good? Why is there  More...

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Book details

List price: $30.95
Copyright year: 2011
Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
Publication date: 8/4/2011
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 192
Size: 5.50" wide x 8.75" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.594
Language: English

Ben Saunders shows that Superhero comics address deep emotional needs. From their earliest days, Superheroes have engaged with some of the most profound spiritual questions that a human being can face: What does it mean to be good? Why is there evil? Why can't I have what I want? How should I live, knowing that I must die? The book suggests these fantasies of power and romance are attempts to wrestle and negotiate with some fundamentally spiritual issues: the problem of evil, the inescapability of human imperfection, and the stark fact of mortality. Saunders argues that the best Superhero comics are not only significant aesthetic achievements - expressions of a misunderstood and under-appreciated art-form as distinctly American as Jazz or Rock & Roll - but that their aesthetic significance derives at least in part from their unique handling of these religious and spiritual themes. With chapters on Superman, Wonder Woman, Spider-Man, and Iron-Man, he considers these characters as artistic projections of our most primitive desires, and our highest aspirations.

Ben Saunders is Associate Professor of English, the University of Oregon.

Acknowledgements
Introduction: The Power of Love
SUPERMAN: Truth, Justice, and All That Stuff
WONDER WOMAN: Bondage and Liberation
SPIDER-MAN: Heroic Failure and Spiritual Triumph
IRON MAN: Techno-Faith
CODA: Modern Gods
Appendix: Methods and Problems in Superhero Studies
Notes
Index

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