Jason Dittmer’s new book on nationalist superheroes
Superhero culture and the nation state
Captain America and the Nationalist Superhero: Metaphors, narratives, and geopolitics (Temple University Press) is a research monograph tracing two kinds of geographies.
First, it traces the way in which superhero culture contributes to the re-inscription of the nation-state as a muscular actor on the world stage, arguing that the characteristics of the nationalist superhero genre (which includes such heroes as Captain America, Captain Canuck, and Union Jack) articulates a particular relationship between the body politic, righteous violence, and legitimate authority.
Second, the book documents how the nationalist superhero genre was transformed by its diffusion from its origins in the United States to Canada and the United Kingdom. Using discourse analysis, interviews with creative staff, and analysis of letters to the editor, Captain America and the Nationalist Superhero combines comics studies and geography, producing a unique analysis suitable for a wide audience.