The Role of the Superhero in the Formation of the Russian Sociocultural Space
pdf (Русский)


History of Culture Structuralism Semiotics Developmental and Social Psychology Personal Identification Entertainment Industry Political Technologies Contemporary Russian Cinema Superhero National Security

How to Cite

Kuzina, N. (2020). The Role of the Superhero in the Formation of the Russian Sociocultural Space. Galactica Media: Journal of Media Studies, 2(3), 223-242.


The author of this article analyzes representations of the image of a superhero in culture and politics of the 1990s - 2010s identifying the reasons for the interest in the image on the part of contemporary Russian youth. The aim of the study is to identify the areas of superhero model demanded in contemporary Russian culture and politics forming personal identity for young people and adolescents in everyday life. It was found out that with almost complete absence of superhero images in original literary and domestic cinematographic works for teenagers in Russia of the last decade, this model is demanded and actively embodied in the images of their amateur literary creativity (for example, in fanfics), in the international computer games industry, and implemented by young people in real life. The area of functioning of the images manifesting contemporary (and romantic) superhero model is most full: it is the sphere of today Russian politics, Russian films about sports of high achievements, musicals showing high achievements' sportsman as a superhero, young amateur literary creativity, everyday life of youth and teenagers. This study makes use of cross-cultural literature, pedagogy, sociology, psychology research, as well as lexics emerged within the youth environment to denote the new genres of subculture, already common in communication (fanfiс, stream).
pdf (Русский)


Aliev, R. T. (2015). Comic Book Hero as a Reflection of the Neomythological Paradigm of American Mass Culture. PhD Thesis. Astrakhan. (In Russian)

Anderson, K. J. & Cavallaro, D. (2002). Parents or Pop Culture? Children's Heroes and Role Models. Journal Childhood Education, 78 (3), 161-168. Doi: 10.1080/00094056.2002.10522728

Baker, K. & Raney, A. A. (2007). Equally Super?: Gender-Role Stereotyping of Superheroes in Children's Animated Programs. Mass Communication and Society, 10 (1), 25-41. Doi: 10.1080/15205430709337003

Belyaev, D. A. (2017). Cultural and Philosophical Exploration of the Superman Idea. Doctor Thesis. (In Russian)

Borisov, S.I. (2010). Heroic image in the genres of "action movie" and "film-comix" in the early XXI century in the U.S. and Russian cinematographs. PhD Thesis. Moscow. (In Russian)

Borovikova, N. M. (2016). Video Production as a Tool for Constructing Cultural Identity. Izvestia Tula State University. Humanities, (2), 180-186. (In Russian)

Borovikova, N.M. (2020). The image of the serviceman in the Russian and Anglo-American Cinema of the XXI century: mass culture and stereotypes. PhD Thesis. Saratov. (In Russian)

Cousin N. V. (2016). Sects and gaming communities as zones of social extremist threats: Ways of prevention and rehabilitation. Science of Krasnoyarsk region, (5(4), 8-29. (In Russian)

Cousin, N.V. & Cousin, L.B. (2017). Network gaming as an alternative world in adolescent and youth counter culture. In Trends and Prospects of Socio-technical Environment Development. Proceedings of the III International Scientific and Practical Conference (pp. 496-499). Moscow. (In Russian)

Cupit, C.G. (1996). Superhero Play and Very Human Children. Early Years. An International Research Journal, 16 (2), 22-25. Doi: 10.1080/0957514960160206

Curtis, N. & Cardo, V. (2018). Superheroes and third-wave feminism. Feminist Media Studies, 18 (3), 381-396. Doi: 10.1080/14680777.2017.1351387

Dmitrieva, D. G. (2015). The Age of Superheroes: The origins, history, and ideology of the American comic book. Moscow: Isotech. (In Russian)

Fradkin, C., Weschenfelder, V. & Mattar Yunes, M.A. (2017). The pre-cloak superhero: A tool for superhero play and intervention. Pastoral Care in Education. An International Journal of Personal, Social and Emotional Development, 35 (2), 137-144. Doi: 10.1080/02643944.2017.1306874

Green, St., Howell, A. & Schubart, R. (2019). Introduction: ‘As if’: women in genres of the fantastic, cross-platform entertainments and transmedial engagements. Continuum. Journal of Media & Cultural Studies, 33 (2), 153-159. Doi: 10.1080/10304312.2019.1569381

Ilyukhina, Yu. V. & Solodova, M. G. (2019). Superheroes School: Educational program for the formation of media-competence prerequisites in older preschool children. Krasnodar: Ecoinvest. (In Russian)

Jay, M. (2018). Supernormal: Stories that make us stronger. Moscow: Mann, Ivanov and Ferber. (In Russian)

Kerdellan, K. & Grezion, G. (2006). Processor Children: How the Internet and video games shape tomorrow's adults. Yekaterinburg: U-Factoria. (In Russian)

Kuzina, N. V. & Kuzina, L .B. (2018). To the question of benefit and harm of cybersports: Players in "Dota 2" as representatives of counterculture - destinies and psychological features of personality (Screening 2017). Psychologist, (3), 19-31. (In Russian)

Lipkov, A. I. (2007). Pandora's Box. Phenomenon of computer games in the world and in Russia. Moscow: LKI Publishing House. (In Russian)

Martin, J. F. (2007). Children's attitudes toward superheroes as a potential indicator of their moral understanding. Journal of Moral Education, 36 (2), 239-250. Doi: 10.1080/03057240701325381

McGonigal, J. (2018). The reality is in question: Why games make us better and how they can change the world. Moscow: Mann, Ivanov and Ferber. (In Russian)

Mortensen, M.B., Fuster, V., Mehran, R., Baber, U. & Falk, E. (2019). Reply: “Zero”: The New Superhero or Superhero in Training? Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 74 (18), 2331-2332. Doi: 10.1016/j.jacc.2019.09.001

Nambi, V., Virani, S.S., Jones, P.H. & Ballantyne, C.M. (2019). “Zero”: The New Superhero or Superhero in Training? Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 74 (18), 2331. Doi: 10.1016/j.jacc.2019.08.1033

Opalev, A. V. (2015). Reasons for radicalism in the youth environment of modern Russian society. Bulletin of the Academy of Economic Security of the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs, (6), 31-34. (In Russian)

Opalev, A. V. (2018). Ethics of Information Security. Social and Humanities Education, 2(2), 84-87. (In Russian)

Polyakova, Ks. В. (2004). Establishment of the semiotic system of American comic book and Japanese manga. PhD Thesis. St. Petersburg. (In Russian)

Samoilova, V. E. (2013). Transformation of the image of the tricster in contemporary mass culture. PhD Thesis. St. Petersburg. (In Russian)

Schubart, R. (2019). Bulk, breast, and beauty: Negotiating the superhero body in Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman. Continuum. Journal of Media & Cultural Studies, 33 (2), 160-172. Doi: 10.1080/10304312.2019.1569382

Trepakova, A. V. (2007). The Values of American Cinema: Genres, Images, Ideas. Moscow: Book House University. (In Russian)

Vetushinsky, A. S., Salin, A. S., Galanina, E. V. & others. (2018). Video games: Introduction to research. Tomsk: Tomsk State University Publishing House. (In Russian)

Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.