Superheroes 11/7 – What do these lenses reveal?

Superhero class,

Now that you’ve seen five presentations (as well as your own) on different lenses literary scholars use to analyze literature, it’s time for you to put into writing what details, questions or conclusions your classmates came to that you wouldn’t have thought of.

In case you need a reminder, here were the lenses we studied in class:
-Psychoanalytical (Freudian)
-Jungian (archetypes)
-Post-Colonialism
-Feminist
-Gender/Queer
-Marxist

In the comments below, explain how one of these groups revealed an aspect to the X-Men and/or God Loves, Man Kills that wouldn’t have occurred to you otherwise. In another paragraph explain why scholars might align themselves to a prescribed literary lens when analyzing and writing about literature.

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7 thoughts on “Superheroes 11/7 – What do these lenses reveal?

  1. 1) Katherine’s group had a presentation about the archetypes in the X-men and how many represents the current events going on, but I never though of the archetypes even stretching to the pronunciation of names. This was due to the mention of Xavier sounding like savior and its backed up by the constant images of Charles Xavier being shown as such by protecting mutants then later on physically shown as such by being crucified such as a religious figure also known as a savior which is Jesus.
    2) Scholars use literary lens to show a deeper meaning and connection between popular archetypes and our world, building a bridge to be used as the theories or a foundation for a thesis. It also allows people to connect themselves to ideas that are relatable and have real world importance. It’s like a hook for it catches the readers by giving ideas that can be translated as real world events that people already know of which could relate to their lives or experiences.

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  2. 1) I don’t remember which group it was, but they were comparing characters to real life people, like Martin Luther King Jr. etc. When they compared, I believe it was Professor X to Martin, that surprised me. I never thought of comparing the characters from God Loves, Man kill to real people who actually made a change in our world. Then that got me thinking, close to the end of the book, when Cyclops began talking to Stryker in front of everyone, and began talking in the place of all the mutants, that reminded me of Martin Luther King Jr. Reason is because Martin used to be the voice of all the African Americans who were being segregated, just like Cyclops was talking for all the mutants who were being segregated. This lens helped me realize that, though I cannot remember the name of the lens.
    2) For why scholars use literary lens I agree with Carlos, its to give a deeper and more detailed connection between popular lenses and our world. I also think that this lenses represents what different people believe in, meaning that some people might use them just to get a deeper understanding and reason out different situations.

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  3. I have never thought about gender. I go through my day by day not thinking about it because it has always been there. It becomes so ingrained in our day to day that I do not notice it is there. When I look at a person, I can tell right away if they are male or female (usually). I never thought about gender roles and how society views gender. An argument brought up in the gender and queer theory group is gender is just a label. It can just be a biological term but it is how we see and view ourselves. That men and women are not that different but society makes it seem this way. Along the same lines as this argument, it brings up up the concept that man can identify themselves more with or as a female and this brings up the topic of transgender people. I never thought about this because I know it’s there but since it is right there on my doorstep, something that I connect or have experience with, I don’t think about it. I think this group did a good job bringing the issue to my attention.

    By focusing on a lens, it provides perspective. As children, we are all self eccentric, we only know our own perspective and bias, growing up, it is a skill we learn to take into account other people’s feelings and perspectives. By looking through a lens, we are taking into account other people’s thinking and feeling and try to see things how they see things. By seeing what they see, we can understand more of the things that they say and the things they do. With this new perspective, I agree with Josh and Carlos that it allows us to have a deeper understanding of the world because we are getting to know the thinking of a variety of people.

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  4. 1. Vanna’s group had a presentation stood out to me about the idea of feminism and how it is/is not portrayed in the X men series. There was examples in X men that connected back to ours with gender theory when we see Kitty fighting Daniel and instead of backing down and “taking it like a women,” she chooses to fight back. This continues on for Kitty how we kind of this time see a female protagonist developing into a stronger character. Yet when i view X men billboards and see Mystique being choked by the actor Oscar Issac (whose character I don’t know he plays), I never really put two and two together how that can be a representation of violence toward women and in God Loves, Man Kills we do not notice that there is not much women leading the group, but more of men taking the leading role. The definition of feminism Vanna brought up never occurred to me that it can be misinterpreted in different ways which how I viewed it as women are trying to be equal to men wanting equal rights as they do whereas they are the other half who view feminism as an excuse for feminist to bash men. The group did do a good job helping me understand how this lens can work and how it cannot work depending if you are reading a comic book or watching a movie.
    2. Scholars align themselves to a prescribed lens when analyzing and writing about literature is because it helps them develop a skill to connect literature to the world either opening up to their new perspective on how they see things or learn to view others interpretation on literature. I do agree with Eric how he explains that us as teenagers are still learning how to take in consideration of other peoples perspective and using the lens we have a deeper understanding that they are talking about and seeing. With that we do not view the world as just black and white, but see their true colors.

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  5. 1) Vanna, Agustine and Momo had a very interesting interpretation of feminism in God loves Man Kills. The group brought up the fact that Xmen keeps the traditional way of treating women in Literature. They explained how women are treated less than men in comic books. They used the example of Kitty and how her super power is a running away power and throughout the story you can’t think of any male super hero that has a running away power. After they told me this it made me see it differently and realize they were right. Most female super heroes have running away powers and if you look at men super heroes there powers are more on the offensive.

    2) They prescribe themselves to some of these lenses because sometimes using the lenses helps scholars come up with a deaper meaning and making lenses for other literature. Example the pearl could of used God loves man kills to incorporate some of the famous archetypes/ lenses into their story to create other lenses.

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  6. Normally (although I’m sure it would’ve been obvious) I wouldn’t have thought of connecting the mutants of X-Men to the indigenous people of America. But after looking at GLMK through my groups’ lens, it becomes very clear: one group being reasoned with, exploited, and then killed off and their land taken–in this case, the debate with Stryker and Professor X being the reasoning, exploitation of kidnapping Professor X and using his powers, and Strykers group killing off “muties” and spreading their blood on playgrounds, streets, and even their own homes.

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  7. During the presentation of vanna’s agu and momo’s group when they had interpreted feminism in x men I had found it odd and interesting. For a group that consists of minorities who are constantly oppressed and casted away by society, I found it odd that In x men women are treated less than what they are. For example kitty’s power isn’t the best of powers it’s more of get away power and is constantly in the shadows of these powerful male figures. As well as how men are the ones to lead and defend them from the dangers of their society. I found that odd because the x men group themselves are a minority group and undergo harsh treatment and are a perfect example of being oppressed, so it would make sense for women to be treated better or given a higher role since they are oppressed as well and want to be in a better position.
    Scholars align themselves with a literary lens while analyzing or interpreting literature because it helps bring out a deeper meaning of the context that one wouldn’t see. In addition it helps change the perspective of the audience on how a text is interpreted and how it could be an influence on one another.

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