“As far as I'm Concerned, that's America's Ass”: How the Body of a Superhero is Constructed
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Body Corporality Other Alien Heroic Superhero Comics Markers Vestimentarity Sexuality

How to Cite

Aliev, R. (2020). “As far as I’m Concerned, that’s America’s Ass”: How the Body of a Superhero is Constructed. Corpus Mundi, 1(3), 53-80. https://doi.org/10.46539/cmj.v1i3.24


The article describes the problem of constructing a comic superhero's body. The author has suggested that the superheroic character's physicality (in comic books, movies, TV series) is based on the subject's views of otherness (including the ideas about the clothing, food and sexuality). The purpose of this study is to analyze the mechanisms involved in the construction of a superhero image in contemporary mass culture.

In the course of the research, the author comes to the following results: 1) the most important patterns of comic book characters' physicality formation are their clothing and sexuality. Superhero bodies can be classified into three main groups - Theriamorphic, Anthropomorphic and Xenomorphic; 2) Superhero physicality is constructed on the border between a suit and its carrier. The costume itself metaphorically and visually "deprives" its owner of a number of organs (eyes, mouth, nose, etc.); 3) The sexual aspect of superhero physicality is mainly manifested in the different categories of otherness and behavior. Thus, the hypothesis that the body of a comic superhero is formed according to the same laws as the body of the Other is confirmed.

pdf (Русский)


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