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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The stranger remains a stranger because they know that knowledge is power ,
and that to give knowledge of one self to another is to give power over oneself to
the other . 32 Into the vacuum that is the stranger we empty our fears and
Ultimately the process of signals and mutual exchanges of aspects of ourselves
gives way to free communion . ... In other words , we begin to give of ourselves
without the assurance of a secure power - base from which we are unassailable .
Perhaps that is also at the heart of the heroic soul, the recognition that we are
indeed potential killers and are fundamentally self-serving and antisocial but that
we can choose not to give in to these character traits. As Star Trek's Captain Kirk
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Myth and Imagination
Heroes and Otherness
With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility
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