Redemptive anti-Americanism and the death of Captain America

Bond Benton

Abstract


The comic book character of Captain America was assassinated during a superhero “Civil War” occurring in the pages of Marvel comics. His death occurred because of his opposition to measures enacted by the U.S. government that denied due process to citizens and the government's faulty justification for military aggression. This essay serves as an exploration of Captain America's redemptive anti-Americanism and how the narrative of “the pure nation corrupted by an illegitimate government” serves as the basis for ostensibly pro-American anti-American rhetoric. A content analysis framework was employed to build an empirical model that demonstrates the presence of redemptive anti-Americanism in the specific texts analyzed (the Civil War and Fallen Son comic book series). Results of the analysis demonstrate correlation between the character, his role in the narrative, and the emergence of redemptive anti-American sentiment. Implications of the analysis are considered.

https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scoms.2013.04.003


Keywords


Anti-Americanism; Captain America; Comic books; War on terror; Content analysis

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Studies in Communication Sciences | ISSN: 1424-4896