Uber Men: Fashionable Heroics and Masculine Style

RMIT University
Publication Type:
Conference Proceeding
Conference Proceedings King Power: Designing Masculinities Symposium, 2007, pp. 1 - 12
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Much has been written about comic book superheroes and their cinematic adaptations. They are cultural icons recognised in every corner of the world and have featured in the childhoods of most Americans and Australians since the 1930s. Superheroes have also helped to construct an ideological worldview from the shifting interactions of politics, history and culture, as well as define a sense of identity and subjectivity. Yet, for such instantly recognisable icons, little has been written in terms of superhero dress and the collective imagination that sartorial practices produce in framing cultural meanings. Rather than situating male superhero attire in the field of costume design functionality, this paper sets out to reposition the discourse of superhero clothing as a vehicle for understanding constructions of masculinity, identity and nation. By providing a set of cinematic case studies, this paper also comments on the impact of nanotechnology in the construction of superhero attire in producing technoaugmented ûber bodies designed to protect the nation s future.
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