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Toxic MasculinityMapping the Monstrous in Our Heroes$
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Esther De Dauw and Daniel J. Connell

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781496828934

Published to University Press of Mississippi: May 2021

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781496828934.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM Mississippi SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.mississippi.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University Press of Mississippi, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MSSO for personal use.date: 25 September 2021

“I’ll Show You What It Means to Be a Man”

“I’ll Show You What It Means to Be a Man”

Hegemonic Masculinity of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice

(p.52) “I’ll Show You What It Means to Be a Man”
Toxic Masculinity

Janne Salminen

University Press of Mississippi

This chapter considers how Zack Snyder’s film perpetuates the idea that only men constitute humanity. Any deviation from the concept of biological cisgendered males occupying key positions in society are treated as anomalous. Wonder Woman can be as strong as Superman, but physically, she does not disrupt the heterosexual matrix in any way. She is also explicitly mentioned as not being part of the same society or ‘world’ as Batman and Superman, implying that women who are equal to men are an exceptional rarity. Other female characters are reduced to damsels in distress or window dressing. Comparatively, male characters can inhabit the hero role through the demonstration of superior physical strength and a performative suffering that legitimizes their law-breaking vigilantism.

Keywords:   Wonder Woman, Batman, Superman, Superhero Films, Gender Theory

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