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Thursday, June 18 • 5:15pm - 7:45pm
Shared Adversities of Disadvantaged Children and Comic Superheroes as Resources for Promoting Resilience

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Abstract #263
Shared Adversities of Disadvantaged Children and Comic Superheroes as Resources for Promoting Resilience
Presenter: Maria Angela Mattar Yunes Co - Presenters: Chris Fradkin, Gelson Weschenfelder
Studies indicate that disadvantaged children are at higher risk for behavioral problems and psychosocial issues, in relation to their non-disadvantaged peers. If these issues are not addressed in childhood, these children frequently mature into adults at higher risk for substance dependence, depression, and incarceration, in relation to societal norms. This study examined possible relationships and associations between the real-life adversities of disadvantaged children and the fictional adversities of popular comic superheroes, in their pre-cloak, pre-costume stage of life. An indexing of comic superheroes was conducted. In the process, it was found that the most relevant superheroes, in terms of pop culture visibility (e.g., Spiderman, Batman, Superman) had a high commonality of shared adversities (e.g., abandonment by family, domestic violence and abuse) with several subgroups of disadvantaged children: orphaned and abandoned children. This untapped resource has potential among clinicians, social workers, and public policy designers for building resilience and promoting empowerment among this hi-risk child and adolescent group. 

avatar for Maria Angela Mattar Yunes

Maria Angela Mattar Yunes

Associate Professor, Centro Universitário La Salle, Unilasalle, Canoas
Lecturer and advisor at the programs of post graduation studies in education in Centro Universitário La Salle - UNILASALLE, Canoas and Universidade Federal do Rio Grande - FURG, Brasil. Main interest on research and intervention on family resilience, community resilience and parental... Read More →


Chris Fradkin

Chris Fradkin received his PhD in Psychology from the University of California, Merced. His research focus has been on obesity risk, quality of life, and health disparities among at-risk adolescents. He is currently conducting post-doctorate research at Centro Universitário La Salle... Read More →

Thursday June 18, 2015 5:15pm - 7:45pm EDT
King's Gym Gymnasium, King's College

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