X-Men and PhilosophyAstonishing Insight and Uncanny Argument in the Mutant X-Verse
The Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture Series, Band 11 1. Aufl.
X-Men is one of the most popular comic book franchises ever, with successful spin-offs that include several feature films, cartoon series, bestselling video games, and merchandise. This is the first look at the deeper issues of the X-Men universe and the choices facing its powerful "mutants," such as identity, human ethics versus mutant morality, and self-sacrifice. J. Jeremy Wisnewski (Oneonta, NY) is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Hartwick College and the editor of Family Guy and Philosophy (978-1-4051-6316-3) and The Office and Philosophy (978-1-4051-7555-5). Rebecca Housel (Rochester, NY) is a professor at Rochester Institute of Technology, where she teaches about writing and pop culture. For William Irwin's biography, please see below.
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS: Superheroic Thanks to X-tra Special Humans and Mutants Alike! xi Introduction: You Are About to Embark on an X-perience with “the Strangest Heroes of All” 1 X1: ORIGINS THE X-FACTOR IN THE EXISTENTIAL 1. The Lure of the Normal: Who Wouldn’t Want to Be a Mutant? 5 Patrick D. Hopkins 2. Amnesia, Personal Identity, and the Many Lives of Wolverine 17 Jason Southworth 3. Is Suicide Always Immoral? Jean Grey, Immanuel Kant, and The Dark Phoenix Saga 27 Mark D. White 4. X-istential X-Men: Jews, Supermen, and the Literature of Struggle 38 Jesse Kavadlo X2: EVOLUTION CONSCIOUSNESS, CONSCIENCE, AND CURE 5. Mad Genetics: The Sinister Side of Biological Mastery 53 Andrew Burnett 6. Layla Miller Knows Stuff: How a Butterfly Can Shoulder the World 66 George A. Dunn 7. X-Women and X-istence 85 Rebecca Housel 8. Mutant Rights, Torture, and X-perimentation 99 Cynthia McWilliams 9. When You Know You’re Just a Comic Book Character: Deadpool 107 Joseph J. Darowski X3: UNITED HUMAN ETHICS AND MUTANT MORALITY IN THE X-VERSE 10. Magneto, Mutation, and Morality 125 Richard Davis 11. Professor X Wants You 140 Christopher Robichaud 12. Dirty Hands and Dirty Minds: The Ethics of Mind Reading and Mindwriting 153 Andrew Terjesen 13. The Mutant Cure or Social Change: Debating Disability 170 Ramona Ilea 14. Mutants and the Metaphysics of Race 183 Jeremy Pierce X4: TH E LAST STAND WAR, TECHNOLOGY, DEATH, AND MUTANTKIND 15. Mutant Phenomenology 197 J. Jeremy Wisnewski 16. War and Peace, Power and Faith 209 Katherine E. Kirby 17. High-Tech Mythology in X-Men 223 George Teschner CONTRIBUTORS: And Now, We’d Like to Introduce the X-Perts: Ladies and Gentlemen, the Amazing, Astonishing, Uncanny, Ultimate Authors from Xavier’s School for Gifted Philosophers! 236 INDEX 241
Rebecca Housel is a professor of pop culture, creative writing, and medical humanities at Rochester Institute of Technology and contributed to Monty Python and Philosophy. J. JEREMY WISNEWSKI is an assistant professor of philosophy at Hartwick College and the editor of Family Guy and Philosophy and The Office and Philosophy. William Irwin is a professor of philosophy at King's College. He originated the philosophy and popular culture genre of books as coeditor of the bestselling The Simpsons and Philosophy and has overseen recent titles, including Batman and Philosophy, House and Philosophy, and Watchmen and Philosophy.
Is mind reading an invasion of privacy? What's wrong with genetic experimentation? How many identities can one person have? Are the X-Men advocates of civil rightsand social change? Do mutants have "human" rights? X-Men is one of the most popular comic-book franchises ever, captivating millions with its teeming X-Verse of genetic mutants who have been unleashing their unique special powers in the service of both good and evil since 1963. Focusing on identity and personal conflict as much as action and adventure, this bestselling series is full of complex characters and storylines that are deeply influenced by important philosophical questions. Through philosophical greats like Aristotle, Sartre, Camus, Levinas, and others, X-Men and Philosophy shows how this remarkable series speaks not only to generations of pop culture audiences, but to the very heart of the human condition.
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