The World’s Hero: Gods and Archetypes in the Myth of the Superman

https://doi.org/10.36892/ijlls.v3i2.582

Authors

Keywords:

Superheroes, Modern Mythologies, Archetypal Criticism, Archetypes, World Mythology, Media text, Traditional Literature, Narratives

Abstract

This study aims to demonstrate and document that the phenomenon of Superman, as a fictional character, is an amalgamation of the extra human attributes of the heroes and gods that are read and seen in ancient narratives. Specifically, it identifies the qualities of Superman as a superhero, determines the parallelism that exists between these qualities of Superman and those of mythological and biblical personae, and establishes the similarity between the scenes, situations, and events found in its mythos and those that are found in archetypal narratives to vividly delineate his image as the world’s superhero. A content analysis of the text was primarily conducted to draw the structural elements of its narrative. Since this study also assumes that literary texts may be viewed outside of their aesthetic merits, an archetypal analysis is subsequently implemented. Meanwhile, the theoretical foundation of this study is predicated on the theory of Archetypes which assumes that literary texts are based on and influenced by archaic structures manifested in the recurring motifs, mythological counterparts, and parallelisms embedded in the story. As stated in the results, it was determined that the mythos of Superman as a heroic character is a reimagination and manifestation of mythological stories as exemplified in the analyzed materials. Furthermore, it showed that he functions as a custodian of several archetypal figures and with this, can be used as a bridge in teaching traditional literature since he embodies a conglomeration of several mythological characters. The materials analyzed in this study were composed of eight graphic novels, six Hollywood films, and two animated movies.

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Published

2021-06-29

How to Cite

Soriano, R. N. (2021). The World’s Hero: Gods and Archetypes in the Myth of the Superman. International Journal of Language and Literary Studies, 3(2), 262–276. https://doi.org/10.36892/ijlls.v3i2.582

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Articles