Religion and Myth in the Marvel Cinematic Universe

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About the Book

Breaking box office records around the globe, the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) has achieved an unparalleled level of success and gripped the imaginations of fans across the world, raising the films to a higher level of narrative: myth. Using the field of religious studies, this is the first book to analyze the Marvel Cinematic Universe as a modern myth, comparing it to epics, symbols, rituals, and stories from multiple world religious traditions.

By exploring how the characters and events of the MCU resemble religious themes and ancient mythic stories, this book places the exploits of Iron Man, Captain America, Black Panther, and the other stars of the Marvel films, alongside the legends of Achilles, Gilgamesh, Arjuna, the Buddha, and many others. It examines their origin stories and rites of passage, the monsters, shadow-selves, and familial conflicts they contend with, and the symbols of death and the battle against it that stalk them at every turn. As a result, we can appreciate how the films deal with timeless human dilemmas and questions, evoking an enduring sense of adventure and wonder common across world mythic traditions.

About the Author(s)

Michael Nichols is academic dean and associate professor of religion at Saint Joseph’s College of Marian University in Indianapolis.

Bibliographic Details

Michael D. Nichols
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Bibliographic Info: ca. 15 photos, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2020
pISBN: 978-1-4766-8159-7
eISBN: 978-1-4766-4208-6
Imprint: McFarland