Tag Archives: marvel comics

52 Book Challenge. Week 4-7

It’s been an incredibly hectic few weeks for me. But no, I haven’t been neglecting my reading. I’ve just neglected to write about the books I’ve read, so here’s a quick overview of what I’ve read during my absent weeks:

Week Four: StarDust by Neil Gaiman

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I absolutely love Stardust. I watched the movie years ago and totally fell in love with the way it represents fantasy. The book is essentially the same story, but it can get a little long winded at times. But its a book so it can afford to be. However, the whole story can pretty much be summed up by two chapter titles:

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Week Five: Aristotle And Dante Discover the Secrets Of The Universe

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I was so excited to read this one. Mainly because of the tumblr hype. Unfortunately I found the reality to be rather… disappointing. This may be because I expected the main character to be boyfriends rather early on. But instead they don’t get together until last few pages of the book and instead both experiment with heterosexual relationships for the majority of the story.

I probably would have enjoyed this one a lot more if it wasn’t for tumblr building up my expectations of it. I’ll probably give it another read in the future, just to get a more unbiased opinion on the story.

 

Week Six: The House of Hades (Heroes of Olympus) by Rick Riordan

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I love this series. It really appeals to the Greek Mythology nerd in me. Riordan retells the myths with a remarkable accuracy. I’m used to representations in popular culture taking a lot of liberties with the myths. The main example being Disney’s Hercules. But Riordan is obviously working incredibly hard to make his facts as accurate as possible.

I love the characters in Heroes of Olympus. Even with the ones I’m not too fond of (aka Frank) I’m emotionally invested in what happens to them. This is especially true of Nico Di Angelo. And if good things don’t start happening to this poor boy in the next book I’m going to be furious.
Week Seven: ???

So I kind of cheated with Week Seven. I started with The Bane Chronicles by only got part way through it.

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But during this week I also read:

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So I’m not quite sure where I stand on the 52 Book thing.

And that’s you all caught up! I’m going to aim to finish Magnus Chronicles this week so hopefully I wont get distracted by any more comics.

If you want to be kept up to date with what I’m reading, check out my instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kellisinaj/

Have you guys read any of the books I’ve read so far? What books would you suggest I take a look at for the rest of the challenge? Let me know in the comments.

Panopticism in Comic Books

For those of you not familiar with panopticism; the panopticon was designed by Jeremy Bentham to be the ideal prison.


The panopticon consists of a circular building with an observation tower in the centre of an open space. The outer wall contain cells for the prisoners and the tower means that the occupants can be viewed at any time. (For a further explanation of how this design works you could read Foucault’s Discipline and Punish but I wouldn’t recommend it).

This design has never been fully put into practice. The closest we have to an actual panopticon is the Presidio Modelo, which now acts as a museum.

Whilst undertaking research for my dissertation, I noticed that a number of comic book prisons (especially DC comics) have utilised this design.

The most obvious reference to Benthams design is in the Justice League of America which includes a lunar base named the Panopticon, which is named as such because it has the ability to see anything.

There are also adaptions of the design, such as in the Marvel prison the Raft which includes a two-way surveillance system which allow inmates to see who is watching them, as opposed to the original design in which inmates have no way of knowing when they are being watched.

Recent adaptions of Arkham Asylum have also incorporated Bentham’s design. In the New 52, Batman tests out the security measures of the new Tartarus Wing and the design is very clearly a representation of the panopticon.

In addition to this, in Arkham Reborn, Arkham Asylum is rebuilt and Jeremiah states that “the main block is device of the principles of Jeremy Benthams Panopticon” and a lot of emphasis is put on how the new design means that the directors can observe the inmates through the one way glass of the rotating tower.

A lot of the designs of prisons in comic books often take a lot of liberties with their creations, mostly in order to accommodate for the super powers of their villains. This means that Benthams design can be utilised despite the setbacks which make it impossible to be achieved in reality.