Abilene Campus (Residential)
Date of Award
Master of Arts
Committee Chair or Primary Advisor
Second Committee Member or Secondary Advisor
Third Committee Member or Committee Reader
Netflix released Marvel’s Luke Cage in 2016 to critical acclaim. Born from a 1970s comic book, the series features Luke Cage, an African-American superhero. Cage is a big, bald, bulletproof black man. Instead of tights and a cape, Cage wears a hoodie calling the audience to remember Trayvon Martin and other victims of white racism. Theologian James Cone created Black Liberation Theology in the 1970s. As a result of Cone’s work, Black Liberation Theology addresses the issue of white racism from a theological standpoint. In this thesis I present a close reading of Marvel’s Luke Cage using Black Liberation Theology as a theory of communication. Here, I explore three questions. First, how does Marvel’s Luke Cage explore Black Liberation Theology’s distinction between blackness and whiteness? Secondly, how does Coker use Marvel's Luke Cage to define liberation and use that definition as a platform to inform liberation initiatives in the United States today? Finally, how does Marvel’s Luke Cage join Cone in critiquing the church and white theology, and what solutions does Coker present to repair the church and white theology’s relationship with blackness? The answers to these three questions work together to affirm the central argument for this thesis: Marvel’s Luke Cage employs Black Liberation Theology to practically reimagine Christian theology and the Christian church as liberating forces in the modern world.
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Morrison, DiArron B., "A Power Man’s Theology: Marvel’s Luke Cage and Black Liberation Theology" (2019). Digital Commons @ ACU, Electronic Theses and Dissertations. Paper 191.
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