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The Puzzle of Personal Identity: How Comic Books Illuminate Real World Issues


The superhero genre of comic books lends itself to explorations concerning the metaphysical puzzles of personal identity over time. This Olio will survey storylines in the Marvel and DC universes involving characters such as Deadpool, Spider-Man, Iron Man, Captain Marvel, Rogue, Jean Grey, The Hulk, Swamp Thing, Batman, and Superman, which present thought experiments that raise questions about whether or not a person’s identity can survive radical physical changes, mind control, consciousness switching, memory deletion, memory absorption, and more! 

We will also discuss the ramifications of how we answer these questions about events in fictional universes on how we should understand our actual practices concerning identity and moral responsibility, criminality and mental illness in the real world.   




Location: Nowadays

56-06 Cooper Ave, Ridgewood, NY 11385

Trees, ping pong, checkers, grass to lie in, fresh air, and the occasional passing freight train.


Other upcoming Olios


Sep 25

Immersive Listening - Radiohead's "OK Computer"

Taught by Whitney George
7:30 p.m. at Nowadays

Sign Up - $15

Sep 26

Olio Seminar | Words Shape Worlds: The Discourse of Courtrooms

Taught by Maureen Matarese
7:30 p.m. at Living Room

Sign Up - $40

Sep 28

True Colors?: A Type of Bliss

Taught by Charles Riley
7 p.m. at Strand Bookstore

Sign Up - $20

Sep 29

OlioHouse Weekend | Afrofuturism & Herbalism

Taught by Makeba Lavan
noon at OlioHouse | Wassaic, NY

Sign Up - $75

Sep 29

The Coded, the Woven, and the Spoken

Taught by Sofi Thanhauser
4 p.m. at Mana Contemporary

Sign Up - $0

Oct 9

Olio Seminar | The New Deadly Sins

Taught by Jeanne Proust
7 p.m. at Nowadays

Sign Up - $40

Oct 12

Communities and Their Pitfalls

Taught by Jeanne Proust
7 p.m. at Strand Bookstore

Sign Up - $20


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