Neomodern Despair, Awe, and the Marvel Cinematic Universe | Dr. Joe Meyer #50

Neomodern Despair, Awe, and the Marvel Cinematic Universe | Dr. Joe Meyer #50

Neomodern Despair, Awe, and the Marvel Cinematic Universe | Dr. Joe Meyer #50 

I can't believe this is episode 50 already. Time goes very quickly. As many of you know, I have been working on my book about Neomodernism. In this episode of the Neutral Ground Podcast, I read a conference paper that I recently presented at the 2022 Psychology and the Arts conference. The paper is titled: "Breaking through the Neomodern Despair: How the Marvel Cinematic Universe Produced a Moment of Awe." It practically falls off the tongue, doesn't it? The paper has three goals: 1) I touch upon Keltner and Haidt's research on awe; 2) I define Neomodern despair through warnings that were given about the loss of narrative knowledge by Jean-Francois Lytard and Agnes Heller; 3) and finally, I dissect the scene from Avengers: Endgame where Captain America (Steve Rogers) is shown finally wielding Mjolnir (Thor's hammer). As I say in my introduction, I had to hack this paper down from its 20+ pages to 11, so some things probably read more rushed than they should. I hope you enjoy. 



00:00 Teaser on Neomodern despair

00:37 Introduction 

02:23 Title of paper and beginning

06:03 Let's talk about awe

08:01 Mental health crisis and Generation Z

09:15 What is Neomodern despair?

15:20 Good news in terms of awe 

16:57 Begin the discussion of Avengers and Captain America

19:06 Why does this scene from Avengers: Endgame work? 

20:14 Keltner and Haidt's five additional themes connected with awe

22:19 Does this scene produce awe?

22:46 Final thoughts on why this is so important for us

24:14 Closing words


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