Up@dawn 2.0

Monday, November 23, 2015

Installment 1. Batman and Philosohpy

The Philosophy of Batman: Part 1
Artwork for the second printing cover of Batman vol. 608, Dec 2002. Art by Jim Lee.
Batman is one of the most iconic characters of all time. While many will look at comic books as a rather childish medium, they could not be further from the truth. Many stories involving Batman are rich with social commentary and characters with distinct philosophical views. This difference in philosophical ideology between Batman and his enemies is often what drives the plot and makes for a compelling story.  Batman is one of the most complex comic book characters because he was not born with or given powers so everything he does is by choice. Batman’s lack of powers force him to make difficult decisions based on ethics and his own philosophical ideals, such as who to save in certain situations since he can’t always save everyone.

                Batman’s philosophical viewpoints mirror many of the ideas discussed throughout the semester, many of which overlap. One prominent example is the ideas Batman shares with Michael Machiavelli. One of Batman’s most prominent means of crime deterrent is the use of fear. While for the most part batman will use whatever means to achieve an end, he will not cross certain lines; his most known being that he will not kill. He has however used many questionable or blatantly unethical means to achieve goals, and does not always come off as the most “friendly” hero.
 Such examples include but are not limited to recruiting and training orphans to fight crime, torturing criminals for information, Invasions of privacy, stealing/ hacking information, and generally operating outside the law as a vigilante are only a small sample of the questionable tactics used by the caped crusader as a means to an end. These questionable actions are not necessarily what Batman wants to do, but what he sees as the most efficient means to the end. 

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