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The Superhero Reader$
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Charles Hatfield, Jeet Heer, and Kent Worcester

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9781617038068

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781617038068.001.0001

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Batman, Deviance and Camp

Batman, Deviance and Camp

(p.237) Batman, Deviance and Camp
The Superhero Reader

Andy Medhurst

University Press of Mississippi

This chapter offers a gay reading of Batman. It presents three reasons why Batman is especially interesting to gay audiences. Firstly, he was one of the first fictional characters to be attacked on the grounds of presumed homosexuality, by Fredric Wertham in his book Seduction of the Innocent. Secondly, the TV series from the 1960s was and remains a touchstone of camp. Thirdly, as a recurring hero figure for the last fifty years, Batman merits analysis as a notably successful construction of masculinity.

Keywords:   superheroes, Batman, homosexuality, gays, masculinity, Fredric Wertham, Seduction of the Innocent

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