Why Superheroes Matter

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Myths initially were initially passed orally. Popular myths would, over each re-telling, become more and more embellished overtime to not only improve the story but most likely to increase audience attention. With the development of language and the invention of poems around c.800 – c.700 BCE, mythology was presented in writing by Homer of Greece who wrote Iliad and Odessy both which describes the Trojan War and the hero Odysseus and his voyage home from the war respectively. Hesiod, a Greek poet, wroteTheogony which for the first time gives a written account of the genealogy of the gods. The gods were described with typical human feelings and failings, but the heroes were noted to provide the connection of mankind and the gods by having one divine parent and one mortal. The next important milestone was a representation of the myths in a myriad of scenes on pottery and ceramics of varied shapes and function which allowed the myths to spread with to a wider audience. The continued popularity of the myths found public buildings being decorated with larger than life sculpture celebrating dynamic scenes from mythology; i.e., the Parthenon at Athens, the Temple of Zeus at Olympia, and the Temple of Apollo at Delphi. By the 5th century BCE, the myths began being told under the new medium of theatre. While this was all taking place, from approximately the 6th century BCE onward, pre-Socratic philosophers began to reject the basis of the myths and gods while searching for a more scientific explanation of the phenomena and events of the natural world. The first historians, Herodotus and Thucydides, in the 5th century BCE began to document as accurately as possible a less subjective view of events, thus the subject of history was born.

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