Heroes and Villains
Hercules, Jesus, James Bond, Luke Skywalker, Gandalf, Frodo, Harry Potter, Buffy Summers, Spiderman, Batman, Captain Kirk, Dr. Who, Darth Vader, Sauron, Voldemort, Lex Luthor, Dr. Doom, the Daleks, the Borg. Almost anybody living in the developed West would be able to group these individuals into two camps: the heroes and the villains. However, what criteria they may use to do this is less clear.
Mike Alsford introduces us to a range of heroic and villainous archetypes on a journey through film, television, comic books, and literature. On the way, he addresses questions such as: What is a true hero? What is a true villain? Have we misunderstood these terms? What kind of societal values do our mythical heroes and villains represent? In trying to understand the extremes of hero and villain we are made more aware of our own ethical standards and given a space in which to explore contemporary concerns over notions of right and wrong, good and bad.
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... aspirations and fears . What a culture considers heroic and what it considers
villainous says a lot about that culture ' s underlying attitudes - attitudes that many
of us may be unaware that we have , and which represent cultural currents that ...
We will therefore now consider how and why a range of thinkers contributed to
the overall suspicion with which the imagination has been viewed within western
culture particularly , but not exclusively , since the Enlightenment . To do this I will
It is here , at the point of a nation ' s confidence in its cultural uniqueness and
selfsufficiency , that folk sentiment meets with ... of a new biological species , but
rather with the creation of a new culture , an extension of the German cultural
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