The Hyper-Narcissus and the Collective Individualism: X-Men and Watchmen Super-Hero Conception

9 Pages Posted: 8 Feb 2020

Date Written: October 15, 2010


In contemporary times, defragmentation, disruption and chaos have allowed the co-existence of several theories, defined by Lyotard (1979) as “petit récits”. One’s paper states the new individualism paradigm, considering mass-culture overcoming, New Media features and entertainment representations of one kind of contemporary hero: the one that needs to be associated with others to belong and accomplish mankind rescue. So we will base our investigation in Giddens, Maffesoli and Lipovetsky social approaches to contemporary times and make analysis content to contemporary film characters, namely: X-men and Watchmen. In this study, one intends to show how the hero imaginary is presented in film characters representation and how these film representations are a reflex of social theorization of the human psychoanalytical referent. So, one conceptualizes the individual perception of risks and the need for individuals association to understand and overcome the problems and risks of contemporary society. Specifically the ones related with the paradoxal approach to human desires and behaviours, the hybridization between man and machine, and the liquid dispositions of feelings and relations.

Keywords: Collective Individualism, Hyper-Culture, Narcissus, Hero, Film Analysis

Suggested Citation

Sebastião, Sónia Pedro, The Hyper-Narcissus and the Collective Individualism: X-Men and Watchmen Super-Hero Conception (October 15, 2010). ESA Research Network Sociology of Culture Midterm Conference: Culture and the Making of Worlds, October 2010, Available at SSRN:

Sónia Pedro Sebastião (Contact Author)

CAPP - ISCSP (Universidade de Lisboa) ( email )

ISCSP, Universidade de Lisboa
Rua Almerindo Lessa - CACIFO 203
Lisbon, 1300-663


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