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Gavaler, Chris: "The Imperial Superhero." In: PS: Political Science and Politics 47.1 (2014), S. 108–111.
|Resource type: Journal Article
BibTeX citation key: Gavaler2014
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Keywords: Großbritannien, Indien, Kolonialismus, Literatur, Randformen des Comics, Superheld, USA
Collection: PS: Political Science and Politics
Set in 1978, the year Edward Said published Orientalism, Salman Rushdie’s Midnight’s Children depicts “magic children” born in the first hour of August 15, 1947, “within the frontiers of the infant sovereign state of India”. Through some “freak of biology” or “preternatural power,” the children receive “miraculous” abilities, including such superhero staples as flight, time-travel, and “a boy who could increase or reduce his size at will”. For his mind-reading narrator, Rushdie evokes the Shadow’s 1930s radio slogan: “the ability to look into the hearts and minds of men”. The American Shadow, like so many of his descendants and predecessors, gained his powers from the mythical Orient, but the fantastical abilities that Rushdie awards the first citizens born in independent India mark the end of colonial exploitation and the transfer of real-world political power from colonizers to the formerly colonized.
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