How are Beowulf and Batman different?  

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writergal06 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Beowulf and Batman represent two different types of heroes. Beowulf is the classic epic hero. He is "larger than life." Beowulf is described as being stronger than thirty men. He lists his accomplishments and feats of strength to Hrothgar, and it is clear that Beowulf has achieved more than what is physically possible for any man. He defeats Grendel with his bear hands.

Batman, on the other hand, is more of a Romantic or Byronic hero type. Batman is a flawed man, dark and brooding, who uses his own sense of morality to justify his actions. His strength lies more in his intellect and ability to create equipment, and not in his personal strength. Also, since he keeps his identity hidden, his accomplishments are never truly accredited to him.

dswain001 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Beowulf is similar to the heroes in classic American folk tales in the sense that he greatly exaggerated. He possesses superior strength and agility. He defeats Grendel alone with his bare hands, something that the best armies were unable to do. Beowulf and his human, but his capers are superhuman.

Batman however, does not possess superhuman strength. But what he lacks in that area, his gadgets more than make up for. His strength lies in his ability to overcome his past, and work to defeat evil. There is a modesty that Batman possesses that Beowulf does not. Batman masks his true identity and is often gone by the time the police arrive. However, Beowulf is all about the glory. He boasts openly about his conquests and is far from humble.

linda-allen eNotes educator| Certified Educator

This question should be on the discussion board.

Here are a few differences:

Batman fights crime in Gotham City. Beowulf fights great battles for whomever will pay him.

Batman keeps his true identity hidden and does not seek fame and glory. Beowulf wants glory and fame--the more the better.

Batman relies on gadgets and gizmos, especially his bat suit. Beowulf relies on muscle and brawn and uses armor and weapons as needed.

That's just a few differences. I hope this helps.

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