Synopses & Reviews
The first look at the philosophy behind the Green Lantern comics—timed for the release of the Green Lantern movie in June 2011
The most recent Green Lantern series—Blackest Night—propelled GL to be the top-selling comic series for more than a year, the latest twist in seven decades of Green Lantern adventures. This book sheds light on the deep philosophical issues that emerge from the Green Lantern Corps's stories and characters, from what Plato's tale of the Ring of Gyges tells us about the Green Lantern ring and the desire for power to whether willpower is the most important strength to who is the greatest Green Lantern of all time.
- Gives you a new perspective on Green Lantern characters, story lines, and themes
- Shows what philosophical heavy hitters such as Aristotle, Descartes, and Kant can teach us about members of the Green Lantern Corp and their world
- Answers your most pressing Green Lantern questions, including: What motivates Hal Jordan to be a Green Lantern? Does the Blackest Night force us to confront old male/female stereotypes? What is the basis for moral judgment in the Green Lantern Corps? Is Hal Jordan a murderer?
Whether you're a new fan or an elder from Oa, Green Lantern and Philosophy is a must-have companion.
Is Hal Jordan a murderer?
What kind of strength is willpower?
Do emotions help or hurt a Green Lantern?
Can a Green Lantern power ring do anything imaginable—and should we worry if it can?
How can insects, mathematical equations, and planets be Green Lanterns?
Green Lanterns and their awesome power rings inspire a sense of possibility and wonder that can last a lifetime. Anyone who dreams of how to make the world a better place can imagine ways to make that dream come true with a Green Lantern ring. Green Lantern and Philosophy shines an emerald light on the many philosophical questions raised in the comics, the films, and the animated series, tackling issues from Aristotle's view of the effect of emotions on virtue, to what Plato's tale of the Ring of Gyges tells us about Green Lanterns and the lust for power, to deciding who is the greatest Green Lantern of all time. So whether you're a fan of Hal Jordan, John Stewart, Guy Gardner, Kyle Rayner, or Alan Scott—and let's not forget Soranik Natu, Kilowog, Katma Tui, Salaak, Mogo, and even Sinestro—Green Lantern and Philosophy will bring enlightenment to help turn the blackest night into the brightest day!
About the Author
is an assistant professor of philosophy at Mount Allison University.
Mark D. White is a professor in the Department of Political Science, Economics, and Philosophy at the College of Staten Island, CUNY. He coedited Batman and Philosophy and edited Watchmen and Philosophy and Iron Man and Philosophy.
William Irwin is a professor of philosophy at King's College in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. He originated the philosophy and popular culture genre of books as coeditor of the bestselling The Simpsons and Philosophy and has overseen recent titles including Batman and Philosophy, House and Philosophy, and Mad Men and Philosophy.
Table of Contents
Part 1. Will and Emotion: The Philosophical Spectrum.
1.The Blackest Night for Aristotle’s Account of Emotions (Jason Southworth).
2. Flexing the Mental Muscle: Green Lanterns and the Nature of Willpower (Mark D. White).
3. Women Are from Zamaron, Men Are from Oa (Sarah K. Donovan and Nicholas P. Richardson).
Part 2. Emerald Ethics: It’s Not All Black and White.
4. Can Anybody Join? Testing for Moral Judgment (Andrew Terjesen).
5. The Greatest Green Lantern: Aesthetic Admiration and the Praiseworthy Hero (Jane Dryden).
6. There Should Be No Forgiveness for Hal Jordan (Nicolas Michaud).
7. Morality, Atonement, and Guilt: Hal Jordan’s Shifting Motivations (Joseph J. Darowski).
Part 3. I’m with Green Lantern: Friends and Relationships.
8. Hard-Traveling Ethics: Moral Rationalism vs. Moral Sentimentalism (Andrew Terjesen).
9. “I Despise Messiness”: The Plato-Aristotle Debate in the Troubled Friendship of Green Lantern and Green Arrow (Brett Chandler Patterson).
10. Can’t Live With ‘Em, Can’t Live Without ‘Em: Green Lantern, Relationships, and Autonomy (Jane Dryden).
Part 4. With This Ring, I Thee Swear: Power, Duty, and Law.
11. The Oaths of Soranik Natu: Can a Doctor Be a Green Lantern? (Tallman and Southworth).
12. Crying for Justice: Retributivism for Those Who Worship Evil’s Might (Mark D. White).
13. Hate Crimes as Terrorism in Brother’s Keeper (Ron Novy).
14. Ring of Gyges, the Ring of the Green Lantern, and the Temptation of Power (Adam Barkman).
Part 5. Don’t Tell Krona: Metaphysics, Mind and Time.
15. All For One and One For All: Mogo, the Collective, and Biological Unity (Leonard Finkelman).
16. The Book of Oa, the Lantern Corps, and Peirce’s Theory of Communal Mind (Paul R. Jaissle).
17. It’s Not Easy Being Green (Amy Kind).
Part 6. Can Green Lantern Make a Boxing Glove He Can’s Lift? Powers and Limitations.
18. Another Glove? Green Lantern and the Limits of Imagination (Daniel P. Malloy).
19. “Beware my Power”: Leibniz and Green Lantern on God, Omnipotence, and Evil (Carsten Fogh Nielsen).
20. Magic and Science in the Green Lantern Mythos: Clarke’s Law, the Starheart, and Emotional Energy (Andrew Zimmerman Jones).
Tales of the Philosophy Corps.