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Do Superheroes Hide Behind Masks For centuries society and literature have revered and idolized extraordinary individuals called heroes The word hero brings to mind several images strength bravery and determination Heroes have been part of human cultures for thousands of years Gilgamesh can be seen as the original superhero followed by many others including Hercules Spiderman and Superman Batman and Catwoman Heroes in The Iliad by Homer such as Agamemnon Achilles and Hector all exhibit courage strength and perseverance Our history books are filled with accounts of heroic actions Daily newscasts report stories about heroes in all walks of life What makes the stories even more fascinating is that the most enduring epic Gilgamesh is nearly 4800 years old Lawall Gilgamesh 10 No matter which era our heroes have these and other certain traits in common The most unexplained quality is that of being a common person or regular guy Superheroes such as Superman Batman and Spiderman all wear the masks of common individuals to conceal their identities Beyond their ability to hide the true identities of these superheroes the common man mask helps to spread the notion of each superheros own persona albeit for the better or the worse This paper seeks to understand what super power a mask imposes on the hero and how he chooses to use it The superhero is perhaps the most resilient and powerful form of idealized masculinity within Western cultural traditions Superhero displays of select aggression strength courage and endurance are defined as virtues inherently good qualities of attained manhood Comic books provide the superhero with a home and offer to the reader an instantly accessible visual for reflection and self-identification Comic book artists and writers kill and mutilate only symbolically and metaphorically with words and with images Yet comic books highlight the connection of a wide range of themes images designs and narrative forms This is evident in the mythological split of the individual
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