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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... not every hero, for example, makes use of enhanced physical strength and
martial arts prowess to deal with their enemies. While hitting things until they fall
over or break is indeed an approach much favoured by the classic hero, this is by
... to both physical and , regrettably , legal force . In commenting upon ex - US
President Richard Nixon ' s involvement in the so - called Watergate political
scandal the Christian ethicist Stanley Hauerwas makes this insightful observation
: one ...
society and thus feel free to act without conscience in the world . One of the most
basic manifestations of this can be seen in the school bully who , perhaps by
virtue of above average physical size or charisma , is able to intimidate their
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Myth and Imagination
Heroes and Otherness
With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility
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