The American Superhero
Encyclopedia of Caped Crusaders in History
by Richard A. Hall
February 2019, 370pp, 7x10
1 volume, Greenwood

Hardcover: 978-1-4408-6123-9
$103, £80, 90€, A142
eBook Available: 978-1-4408-6124-6
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

In 2018, Marvel Studios’ movie Black Panther shattered a host of box office records, showing the public’s growing desire for diverse comic narratives.

This compilation of essential information on 100 superheroes from comic book issues, various print and online references, and scholarly analyses provides readers all of the relevant material on superheroes in one place.

The American Superhero: Encyclopedia of Caped Crusaders in History covers the history of superheroes and superheroines in America from approximately 1938–2010 in an intentionally inclusive manner. The book features a chronology of important dates in superhero history, five thematic essays covering the overall history of superheroes, and 100 A–Z entries on various superheroes. Complementing the entries are sidebars of important figures or events and a glossary of terms in superhero research.

Designed for anyone beginning to research superheroes and superheroines, The American Superhero contains a wide variety of facts, figures, and features about caped crusaders and shows their importance in American history. Further, it collects and verifies information that otherwise would require hours of looking through multiple books and websites to find.


  • Examines in detail how superheroes and superheroines have appeared in comics and other media over the decades
  • Shows how superheroes and superheroines have reflected the hopes, fears, and values of American society at any given period
  • Provides scholarly material that gives readers additional important historical context in five essays
  • Ensures that diverse and obscure superheroes and superheroines are given equal coverage
Richard A. Hall, PhD, resides in Laredo, Texas. He received his PhD from Auburn University. He is a contributing author to Pop Culture Universe: Icons, Idols, Ideas and The Dark Side: A Supervillain Reader.


"...considering the enormous popularity of everything superhero, this volume would be a welcome addition to almost any collection."—ARBA, March 1, 2019
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