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Myth And Heroes

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Par   •  1 Décembre 2013  •  576 Mots (3 Pages)  •  2 349 Vues

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A myth is a fictitious story which can convey the ideals of a society and which creates or perpetuates inspiring heroic figures. Heroes are these persons, either real or imagined, which are not always superhumans but whose successful careers or great abilities and strong personalities made become role models. Since a myth correspond to a certain period and a hero to a certain myth, each one of them dominates his time. Thus, new ones appeared during the 21st century to represent the younger generation whereas some will remain for centuries and will never age.

Then how can they influence people and their career's choice ?

Heroes and myths created by the media and art (USA > entire world) :

Fictional characters

The photographs being studied (p.16-17) give us examples of heroes. For instance, Wonder Woman is one of the most famous superheros of comic books : as a free person who surpasses herself in order to devote her life to others and to her country and as a “foreigner”, she perfectly represents US myths such as the Melting Pot's one (>outsider, superpowers that make her different from “traditional” US citizens) and values, such as patriotism and philanthropy (cf > defends her country/others...). But she also represents the success of women in fields traditionally reserved to men : it's about power and fighting in this case. James Bond, a fictional spy from Ian Fleming's novels, became both an international and national hero : he also embodies the perfect patriot and makes us “dream” with a dangerous life wich seems perfect in novels and films. The difference is that he represents male chauvinism instead of gender equality, but curiously, this doesn't affect the vision of hero people have about him.

Existing role-models

People also refer to existing role-models : another but real woman who embodies women's liberation is the author J.K. Rowling who enjoys a worldwide recognition thanks to her Harry Potter saga.

(Jack London's text from “Martin Eden” > Ruth takes Mr Butler, a real person (in the book) as an example in order to stimulate Martin)

The apparition of industry and thus of “entrepreneurs” reinforced the myth of the American dream which was already in place since the early 19th century. The record “Great American business leaders” deals with this new generation of capitalists like Bill Gates or Warren Buffet. They are the representation of a successful career because they reached all the expectations of most of the common people : they are more than rich, they have fame but without an excessive media coverage and they care for people in need, giving their money to charity purposes.

Another side of the “american dream” is the star system which is basically the “Hollywood star system” since it was born in the industry of film-making. But it now applies to singers too. For example, an article from the Guardian blog concerns the international phenomenon Justin Bieber, a young boy from a poor social background but who rised to stardom with “never giving up hope”


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