RCL #5- Rhetorical Analysis Draft

Artifact: superhero Miss America Chavez

Audience- rcl class/ fellow college students, progressives  

Style: magazine article (maybe)

Additional notes- ALL CAPS words are placeholders.  Words in <brackets> are notes to myself.  MAC = Miss America Chavez.  Cap = Captain America.




Buh-bye, Captain America- there’s a new sheriff in town, and her name is Miss America Chavez.  Miss America, who made her debut in the 2011 comic series, Vengeance is just like any other millennial- she’s a spunky, spirited college student who loves her phone, her girlfriend, and punching supervillains- well, maybe that one’s a bit unique. <stuff here about her, her powers, etc..>  Miss America Chavez represents the young generation of Americans today.


BODY 1- Generational differences

Captain America has done a good job of representing the US for the past 80 years, but nowadays, he’s a little outdated.  Worry not- MAC is here to take his place as the symbol of America.  If you don’t believe me, here are some facts:

  • Her name is (literally) America
  • MAC’s outfits are all USA themed, and her original top was in the shape of Cap’s sheild
  • In her first solo comic book, she travels back in time and punches hitler (ala Captain America, Volume 1)
  • One of her possible futures is as the next Captain America 
  • <change formatting to non bullet>

These are where the similarities run short, though.  In fact, Steve Rogers and MAC are about as different as two people can be- representative of the differences between older generations and ours.  Both characters were created with image of what they were fighting in mind.  Where Nazi fighting Steve Rogers embodies an aryan ideal, America Chavez subverts this and is a queer woman of color- every demographic that our generation has worked hard to advance the rights of.  Her values and personality is much different, too- where Cap is idealistic and patriotic, MAC is a realist who holds her allegiance to herself and her friends.  <make comparison- millennials disillusioned with state of country, not the same nationalism as during caps time?>  Finally, the problems she addresses are different than the ones cap did.  Where cap addressed an outside enemy, America’s issues stem from within our own country- racism, sexism, and homophobia are rife from within the smallest of towns to the highest of government positions.  With our generation’s problems being so different than cap’s, it’s no wonder we needed someone new.

It’s also no wonder that her first appearance was in a comic series about generational clash.  <find somewhere to put that in better>  To further illustrate the point, MAC was created because of Marvel Comics’ push for diversity, a change that occurred because older superheroes no longer appealed to young audiences, and we wanted more.

<- things to add in somewhere….

  • Specifics of how she reps what our generation fights for (hillary, same sex marriage, race equality, etc)
  • How her personality/values differ>

BODY 2- Society is more accepting.

Miss America Chavez exists- in many parts- due to our more accepting society.  Even as close as 10 years ago, a latina, lesbian, woman would not even exist as a character, let alone be as popular as she is today.  To make this clear- when she was created in 2011, the writers made her straight.  It wasn’t until 2013 when a new set of writers made MAC became the lesbian we know and love today.  MAC embodies the differences of our generation from those before.  Our generation saw the first black president, the women’s march, and the legalization of gay marriage, and so it makes sense that these moments so impactful to us are what define her.  That’s not to say that older generations did not overcome sexism, racism, or homophobia- they definitely did- but there has been a change, starting with ours, about how each of those is viewed.  We don’t view ourselves as something to hide, or be ashamed of- we’re proud.  At rallies, at parades, at our dinner conversations… we are proud of who we are and we’re not afraid to shout it from the rooftops.  MAC, too, is proud.  She’s loud and proud and in-your-face about everything from her sexuality, to race, to gender, or to her strength.  Everything someone who might have idolized the original Captain America would have SHUNNED.  It’s worth noting again, that MAC could be a future Captain America- a symbol for american society as a whole, as it is.  She’s not quite there, not yet, but she could be.  A society where MAC can take the Captain America role and name completely is one where we have shed the BONDS? Of prejudice and bigotry, and is a society that hopefully, in our lifetime, we can achieve. <basically, she shows how far we’ve come and how far we can go>


BODY 3- Eradicating Hate

While MAC is a representation of the progress we’ve made, she is also, unfortunately, a direct response to very REAL AND BAD issues in today’s society.  When MAC was created, anti-immigrant and anti-latino sentiment was present, but in the last few years, it has become a problem much bigger than it was originally.  With this change in THOUGHT?, Miss America’s purpose changed as well.  In January, Donald Trump took the oath of presidency after running on a platform of hate and bigotry.  In march, the first comic in MAC’s solo series debuted.  The variant covers all featured the words “AMERICA”, all bold, all red, white, and blue, and underneath a picture of our very own MAC.  One cover mimics the “Hamilton” playbill, another Beyonce’s Formation, and the last is just plain old MAC, decked out in patriotic bling, ready to punch someone.  Each of these covers associates the idea of America with something meaningful and relevant- a musical that put POC in the shoes of the founding fathers, a piece of art that celebrates black culture, and America herself, in all her queer, brown, female glory- and strength.  The “America” that the covers (and the character herself) depict is the opposite of the America our current president wants, and this is deliberate.  Her character exists to fight for a more inclusive America and fight against hate.   She is us- and while we fight and rally and protest to help make our country a better place, she fights too.  <add more?  How she serves as a positive example when president and media mainly spew out negative ones.  How that impacts young generation of comic book readers, etc?>



  • Restate that MAC represents our generation of America- who we are, what we’ve done, and what we have yet to do
  • She is the clash between generations- ours and the one before it.
  • We are fighting this, too, and we will succeed <us against trump, against orthadox views, etc>
  • MAC’s version of America is the real ~spirit~ of america
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