Philological Studies

at Jan Kochanowski University in Kielce

ISSN 2300-5459 e-ISSN 2450-0380



Author Wojciech Lewandowski
Title Values not Semantics: Captain America and Self-Reliance
Keywords Captain America, Self-Reliance, comic book, freedom, security
Pages 275-291
Full text
Volume 33


The idea of Self-Reliance is an axiological component shaping the American democracy. A self-reliant individual is expected to look for the truth independently of social demands. Only such citizens are capable of reforming the society, provided that their efforts are a result of individual insight. Post 9/11 American popular culture provided a space for discourse on the future shape of the American democracy with its conflicting values of freedom and security. Superhuman Registration Act that divided the world of Marvel superheroes was a reflection of the real-life USA PATRIOT Act. It is the aim of this paper to evaluate whether Captain America’s opposition to the new laws, as depicted in the Civil War comic book, was an act of Self-Reliance as advocated by Ralph Waldo Emerson.